Monthly Archives: April 2019

funeral homes in San Leandro, CA

What Is A Celebrant?

Celebrants are becoming more and more popular in funeral homes in San Leandro, CA and beyond. But what is a celebrant? And what can one do for you or your loved one’s funeral?

A funeral celebrant is a qualified Master of Ceremonies that helps to officiate funeral services by planning, overseeing and carrying out the proceedings. They can host both religious and non-religious funerals. They are called celebrants because most people aim for the funeral service to be a celebration of the deceased’s life. This celebratory approach puts more emphasis on a life well lived, unique traits, and special memories rather than grief and loss. A celebrant can help you craft unique funeral services with substance, personalization and meaning.

You should hire a funeral celebrant if you want someone to take charge of hosting and speaking during the funeral. Celebrants are more flexible and open to new things that traditional funeral hosts like ministers or priests, so you can add more customization to the service. A celebrant can also help you come up with ideas for this customization. This help can be very meaningful during a difficult time of loss.

While most funeral homes can recommend a celebrant, it’s a good idea to also do some research on your own. Make a list of possibilities, do some Googling, then call each one to get your questions answered. If you need more information, feel free to meet with your options in person to get a better feel for what they can bring to the table. During your first meeting with a potential celebrant, explain what kind of funeral you want, and how much you’d like him to be involved in the proceedings.

While vetting potential celebrants, think about and ask the following questions to get a better idea of what they offer:

  • Do you make house calls?
  • How much do you charge?
  • How often to you host funerals?
  • What’s the best way to reach you? How often are you available?
  • Can you provide me with a funeral script?
  • Can I have referrals from previous clients?
  • Do you have any additional fees?

Remember, your funeral celebrant is there to help you, and should therefore be willing to work with you to develop the funeral services you want. Don’t be afraid to ask questions, as the right celebrant will be more than willing to help out in any way he can.

Hiring a funeral celebrant is an out-of-the-box way to make sure your loved one’s funeral or service is unique, celebratory and respectful. There are celebrants for hire all over the country, but not every one is a good choice.

Deer Creek Funeral Service, located at 1700 Norbridge Ave Ste D Castro Valley, CA 94546, is a San Leandro, CA funeral home with years of experience. We would be happy to recommend you to a celebrant, connect you with someone who can meet your needs, or give you more information about our funeral services and us. Please give us a call at (510) 317-7890.

funeral home in San Leandro, CA

Obituary Basics

From choosing a funeral home in San Leandro, CA to picking out flowers, there’s a lot to accomplish when you lose a loved one. Your long to-do list can be stressful, so why not learn some basic information about one of your tasks now to help assuage this stress? You can start with obituaries.

Obituaries are a traditional way to let family and friends publically celebrate the life of the deceased, and announce the death in a compassionate manner. To be better prepared to write an obituary for your lost loved one, here are the common parts of obituaries:

  • Announcement of Death – Obituaries usually start with basic information such as the name, age, and place of residence of the deceased. This is followed by the death announcement, including the time and place of death. Most people choose to use a softer word or term that “death,” such as “passed away”, “died”, “went to be with the Lord” etc. Many people are unsure whether or not to list the cause of death in the obituary. At the end of the day, the cause of death is only the family’s business, and does not need to be shared unless the immediate family chooses. However, if the death was sudden and unexpected, listing the cause of death in the public obituary might field questions and repetitions at the funeral.
  • Biographical Sketch – The key word in this portion is “sketch.” Many people are tempted to write a full account of the deceased’s life. While some people may find that interesting or helpful, the obituary is only meant to detail the most important aspects of his life. Some key pieces to include are the date and place of birth, parent’s names including mother’s maiden name, date and place of marriage, birth name of spouse, education, work, and military service. Feel free to list events chronologically, or to take a more creative approach. Don’t forget to mention specific important relationships and the effect the deceased had on people’s lives. For example, did he have a great sense of humor? Did he always make time for the kids? Was he an exceptional host, golfer, singer?
  • Family – As the saying goes, the funeral is for the living. The same can be said for the obituary, so a key element is listing the surviving family members and loved ones. Take care to not forget anyone, but don’t feel the need to list every single member of the extended family.
  • Service Times – While tradition varies on this element, most obituaries include funeral information so people can attend if they choose. List the essentials: time, full date and place of service along with the name of the officiate; time, full date and place of burial or interment if applicable; and finally, time, full date and place of visitation.
  • Special Messages – Most people choose to include a special thank you or message at the end. This may also include a prayer or poem.
  • Photos – Include a photo. While this adds to the cost, it is a lovely way to remind people of their connected to the deceased.

If you have more questions about obituaries or other San Leandro, CA funeral home aspects, Deer Creek Funeral Service can help. Visit us at 1700 Norbridge Ave Ste D Castro Valley, CA 94546, or call (510) 317-7890.

cremation in Walnut Creek, CA

Average Cremation Laws

It’s completely normal to have lots of questions if you’re considering choosing cremation in Walnut Creek, CA for your eventual body disposition, or for a recently deceased loved one. Some of the most common questions are about cremation law. Luckily, most states have similar if not the same cremation laws in place. Some average cremation laws include:

  1. Authorization – In most states the next-of-kin, or “authorizing agent,” can authorize cremation. The authorizing agent must complete, sign and submit an authorization form before the cremation can take place.
  2. Permits – You are required by law to have a cremation permit. Once the death certificate is completed and the cremation authorization is filed, the county will issue a cremation permit. Cremation permits cost anywhere from $10 to $40 depending on the county.
  3. Cremation Provider Licenses – All cremation providers are licensed and certified, as there are specific rules and regulations in place to protect consumers and ensure safe handling of the deceased.
  4. Casket Requirements – Caskets are not required by law for cremations, but most states have laws stating that a rigid container must be provided for the cremation. These containers only have to be combustible and strong enough to support a body when being placed into the cremation chamber.
  5. Cremation Viewing – Families viewing the cremation is not regulated by law, and therefore varies from crematory to crematory. Confirm with your chosen provider as its not guarantees.
  6. Remain Handling – Laws about what you can and cannot do with cremated remain can vary greatly from state to state. However, most have similar general ideas like you cannot commingle cremated remains unless by deceased’s request, and you can only scatter cremated remains with appropriate authorization from the local authorities.
  7. Cremation Costs – Crematories are obligated to provide clear and concise descriptions of all services included each cremation price, as people who gave recently suffered a loss might be more susceptible to bad business practices. Cremations range in cost depending on the service and merchandise.
  8. Body Transportation From State to State – If the body is transported over a period of 24 hours or more after the death, embalming may be required. There are airline funeral shipping businesses that also have specific regulations and rules such as the purchase and use of a designated aircraft mortuary-shipping container.
  9. Cremation Consumer Protections – There are lots of laws protecting cremation consumers, from laws prohibiting crematories and funeral homes making false statements about body guarantees or cremation merchandise purchasing. If you want more information, check with your local or state government.

There are, of course, some cremation laws that vary from state to state, so you should always ask your cremation provider for more details regarding your local laws. If you want to learn more about Walnut Creek, CA cremations, Deer Creek Funeral Service can help. Please visit us at 1700 Norbridge Ave Ste D Castro Valley, CA 94546, or give us a call at (510) 317-7890 for more information.

cremation in Castro Valley, CA

10 Warning Signs of Grief

Grief is always hard, from right after a cremation in Castro Valley, CA to the following months and years. Everyone experiences grief in different ways and for different amounts of time, but there are some common warning signs that your grief might be too much for you to handle on your own.

If you experience any of the following, you might want to consider seeking help for your loss:

  1. Numbness to Emotion – Grief comes with a range of emotions, from sad and confused to even happy. Each emotion is acceptable during periods of mourning, but numbness is not. If you are feeling entirely numb and unable to feel any emotions, it may be time to seek help.
  2. Hallucinations/Voices – It may be comforting to imagine your lost loved one is with you, but hearing voices or seeing things that aren’t there is always a cause for concern. Be especially wary if what you are seeing or hearing is accusing or angry.
  3. Avoiding Time with Loved Ones – Sometimes its easier to process grief on our own, but its also important to be with loved ones. If you find yourself consistently avoiding other people, you should consider counseling.
  4. Inability to Move On – There is nothing to be ashamed of about not being able to move on. Sometimes we all need a bit of help.
  5. Loss of Enjoyment – You shouldn’t stop living your life completely during grief. You’re still allowed to pursue your interests and goals. If your grief is preventing you from pursuing activities that you enjoy, or enjoying things you normally would, you may just need help finding your way forward.
  6. Sudden Changes in Behavior – If you find that you don’t recognize the choices you’re making or the person you’ve become, this may be cause for concern. Keep and eye out for irrational anger, excessive drinking, and drug use.
  7. Fear of New Relationships – Apprehension of new relationships due to the fear of loss is common when grieving. However, in order to move forward and continue to grow, we must forge new relationships.
  8. Escapism – Staying busy or trying to escape to avoid feeling sad is not a long-term solution. Eventually, you will need to face your feelings. If you are don’t feel up to doing so on your own, it may be wise to ask for a helping hand.
  9. Thoughts of Hurting Yourself – Feeling you want to hurt yourself should not be ignored, and must be addressed with a professional.
  10. Inability to Continue Normal Activities – If you are unable to perform normal activities like going to work or school, or even eating or sleeping, you many need a help with coping.

Deer Creek Funeral Service, located at 1700 Norbridge Ave Ste D Castro Valley, CA 94546, is an experience Castro Valley, CA cremation provider and can offer you more information on dealing with or getting help for grief. Please give us a call at (510) 317-7890 to learn more about what we can do for you.