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Burial at Sea Options

When someone passes away, it can be hard for their loved ones to let them go. However, we all have to respect the last rites of the bodies that once contained very beloved souls, sad though it may seem.

In a way, burying or cremating the body is also an effective way to deal with the death of someone you love. The exact method might be done according to the wishes of the deceased, or whatever seems best for those left behind.

Having a Non-Traditional Burial

Traditional burial mostly consists of an underground burial and is still the top choice of many individuals. However, not everyone prefers a traditional burial for his or her departed loved one. Some people might also wish to have a unique send-off and express their wishes before their death. Fortunately, there are other options for those who don’t want a traditional type of burial for their loved ones.

The Cremation Option

Cremation is one alternative to the traditional underground burial. This is when the body is burnt and the ashes returned to the family. The ashes could be kept in an urn and inside someone’s house, scattered on the ground, or anywhere else.

Many people choose cremation for a lot of reasons. Firstly, it might be preferred by the mourning family or desired by the deceased himself/herself due to the clean and quick method. Another reason is its relative affordability. Cremation is usually less costly than a traditional (underground) burial. Burial costs include a coffin, a cemetery plot, a headstone, and several other necessities.

Following the cremation, it is possible to carry out the traditional memorial service as with the underground burial. Many people choose traditional memorial services at a church or a funeral home, where a pastor, as well as the deceased person’s family and friends, can make speeches. Another way of honoring the deceased individual is through an ash scattering service, which could take place afterward or even be an alternative to the traditional memorial service.

The ash scattering service can also be held as a burial at sea. This involves collecting the ashes in some sort of container and then scattering the ashes of the deceased onto the waters. There are several advantages to this practice, so let’s discuss it further below.

Flexibility

The beauty of an ash scattering service is its flexibility. It can take whatever form or type of celebration that the deceased’s family members would like. You can have it be tranquil and reflective or more of a celebration of a life well lived.

The service can take place where the deceased decided or whatever seems proper at the time. It’s up to the family how and where this type of service should be performed, as long as it’s within the boundaries of the law.

If the deceased had expressed his/her wishes and instructions before dying, then the bereaved family would try to incorporate these wishes into the service. Other people will choose to honor their deceased loved one in a manner that they see is appropriate.

The wishes of the deceased might not conform to the laws of the current day, or might not be possible at that time. For instance, if the place they chose is now choked with garbage, family members would definitely not feel comfortable scattering the ashes in such a place.

Considering a Professional Planner

Some people and families won’t need external help — even professionals — in planning the ash scattering service. Many people, in fact, would rather do the task themselves. Conversely, there are other people who will readily hire the services of a professional in order to make sure there nothing missing. If you don’t feel up to the task, there’s no harm in getting a pro in to get the job done.

Exploring one’s options into the ash scattering service is always a good idea. That way, you’ll get a better decision-making process for the whole family before deciding on the type of ash scattering service. If an individual or family members are struggling with coming up with ideas on their own, hiring a professional ash-scattering service will lessen many of these burdens.

Another positive factor of letting a professional planner to do the job is that they are aware of how things go and understand the legalities regarding ash-scattering. They will know which places are off-limits and otherwise lawfully permissible to do such services. A professional planner will be able to advise the bereft individual or family members regarding this area, so it’s a safe option.

Hiring a professional ash-scattering service is the best move for the bereaved individual or family members, especially considering that they are undergoing a tough phase. However, some might want to do everything themselves as the last service to their loved one, so it really comes down to your instinct.

Fitting the Personality

One very special aspect of the ash scattering service is that it can celebrate the personality of the deceased individual when he/she was alive. For instance, if the departed person had loved the water or worked on or near the water, an ashes scattering memorial service is the most befitting way to honor him/her.

While those who have a sea burial at usually navy personnel or former sailors, anyone can have this option. The deceased might have adored walking along the beach or lived near it all their life. As long as the people in charge of the ashes/body have a license and comply with certain environmental rules, there’s no reason why their departed can’t have a burial at sea.

Certifications and Precautions

However, there are a few reasons why a certain body might not be allowed to have a burial at sea. The applicant for this practice should have a doctor’s certificate that the ashes or body don’t carry any sort of infection or fever. If there’s a body, it should not have undergone any embalming process. Plus, the clothing should be light and biodegradable.

Biodegradable Options

Other than ash scattering, one can also have a burial at sea by releasing the ashes inside the urn. Scattering the ashes might be too much for some, and letting go of an urn might be able to give a more solid experience. This is why you might want to take a look at the biodegradable urn by companies such as Earth Memorials for a lovely final farewell. Take a look at it here:

These urns are suitable for the purpose of holding the ashes until you scatter them, for burying in the ground, or for putting into the sea. The unique aspect here is that you can set the urn afloat for a time, even putting some candles and flowers on the side. Watching the urn float and then sink gradually will hopefully give you some time for a proper goodbye.

The materials for this urn are clay and cotton, making up a detailed floral paper with gold beads for decoration. There’s a bowl to help the urn float on water for some time, then sink slowly and break down in a natural way. Many have found that this was the best way to let go of their loved ones, as it’s environmentally responsible and considers the bereaved family’s feelings as well.  

Conclusion

An ash-scattering service or any other method of a burial at sea can be a very fitting way to say farewell to a loved one. One can decide just how they want to say goodbye and have the satisfaction of knowing the remains aren’t going to harm the environment. This, along with the many reasons cited above, is why many people want a burial at sea for themselves or their loved ones.

If and when you do go for the option of a burial at sea, consider the services of a professional planner or memorial service in order to do things right. Even if you want to do most of the work yourself, having an experienced professional to guide you can save a lot of hassle at this difficult phase.

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