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Make The Funeral Unforgettable With These Burial/Memorial Ideas

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'Funerals are for the living' is a common axiom that serves to highlight the importance of giving people a way to say their last goodbyes to friends and family members who have passed away. Whether you're planning your own funeral or putting together a memorial for someone else, adding a unique spin to the arrangements can help bring closure to others while also creating an unforgettable experience that can help with the mourning process. Here are two interesting burial or memorial ideas you can use to produce a one-of-a-kind send off.

Customized Fantasy Coffin

One interesting tradition that comes from Ghana, Africa, is burying people in caskets customized to reflect the individual resting inside. These are no ordinary coffins though. These fantasy coffins—also called figurative or proverbial caskets—are elaborately designed to represent the occupation or interests of the deceased.

For instance, one coffin was crafted to look like a Mercedes Benz to represent the success of the business man being buried. A person who drove a public bus for a living was laid in a coffin shaped like a bus. Fishermen were put to rest in fish-shaped caskets.

Opting to have yourself (or your loved one) placed in one of these intricately wrought coffins can go a long way towards leaving a lasting impression with funeral attendees. It can also help inspire fond memories of the person, especially if the individual was known for being passionate about his or her job, hobby, or whatever symbolic item you choose to represent the person.

It's no problem if the body is going to be cremated rather than buried, because you can get fantasy urns as well. For instance, one designer will craft an urn into the shape of a fish for about $795.

Staged Scene

If you're the 'Go big or go home' type of person, then a viewing or wake involving a staged scene may be what you're looking for. This is what one family did for their loved one who was an avid football fan. The funeral home set up a small stage and arranged it so the decedent was sitting in a recliner covered in a blanket with his favorite team's logo on it and watching a television that played a loop of football highlights. When people saw the scene, they were reminded of how the man was in life.

A staged scene is an excellent way to celebrate the person's life, which may draw the focus away from the sadness of losing the individual. This may be especially touching if most everyone the person knew also had a connection to that part of the individual's life. For instance, if the person's entire social network was into tabletop role-playing games, then setting up a scene of the decedent dressed as his or her favorite character and fending off dragons may be particularly touching for everyone who played with the decedent.

Be certain you share your plans with the funeral director, as there may be legal hurdles you have to overcome depending on what you plan on doing with the body. Many states have abuse and desecration laws that make it a crime to do certain things to dead bodies, and you could face a fine or jail time if you run afoul of them.

Preparing for death is hardly ever easy, but putting together the right memorial and funeral can make it easier for loved ones left behind to get past the loss. Even if you don't want anything as elaborate as the two suggestions in this article, there are many small things you can do to make the funeral memorable. Connect with a funeral director at a funeral home like Hitzeman Funeral Home, Ltd who can provide advice and assistance.

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6 June 2016