"Preparing for Death is a Gift to the Living..."
For many of us, it is difficult to think about death, and even more difficult to talk about it.
During our longstanding service to Dover and the surrounding communities, we've seen, time and time again, the peace of mind that thoughtful preparation can bring. While preplanning is a thoughtful gesture, it allows you to make unhurried, informed decisions. It gives you time to organize your important documents so your survivors will have the information they need, and so insurance or other benefits won't be overlooked. If you choose to invest in a prepayment plan, you not only guard against the higher costs in the future, you also assure funds will be available when they're needed most.
Advance planning allows you to choose a reasonable budget and permits you to set aside the funds over a period of time, if you choose. Funds set aside against future costs are held in a state-approved account until needed. There is no charge for making prearrangements and many families simply prefer to record this vital information for future use.
Record the statistical information about yourself and your family, right now, in the privacy of your home. You can choose to only record the items that you wish, and we will keep this information on file at Locust Hill Cemetery, and you may add to it, update it, or come in and complete your pre-planning at your convenience.
Right now, in the privacy of your home, you can:
Gather obituary information, including a photo, age, place of birth, occupation, college degrees, memberships held, military service and any outstanding work as your legacy.
Decide on the type and place for the funeral or memorial service.
Decide on an appropriate charity to which gifts may be made (church, hospice, library, organization, school), if appropriate.
Decide on the type of funeral service, casket, burial vault, music, and flowers. If you choose to be cremated, select the vessel and disposition of your remains.
Determine how the expenses for your death will be handled, either by pre-payment or specific funds you allocate to these expenses.
Here are some terms that may help you understand what you need to plan for:
Casket/Coffin - A box or chest for burying human remains.
Cemetery Property - A grave, crypt, or niche.
Cemetery Services - Opening and closing graves, crypts, or niches; setting grave liners and vaults; setting markers; and long-term maintenance of cemetery grounds and facilities.
Columbarium - A structure with niches (small spaces) for placement of cremated remains in urns or other approved containers. It may be outdoors or part of a mausoleum.
Cremation - Exposing human remains and the container holding them to extreme heat and flame and processing the resulting bone fragments to a uniform size and consistency.
Crypt - A space in a mausoleum or other building to hold cremated or whole human remains.
Disposition - The placement of cremated or whole human remains in their final resting place. A Permit for Disposition must be filed with the local registrar before disposition can take place.
Entombment - Burial in a mausoleum.
Grave - A space in the ground in a cemetery for the burial of human remains.
Grave Liner or Outer Container - A concrete cover that fits over a casket in a grave. Some liners cover tops and sides of the casket. Other liners (vaults) completely enclose the casket. Grave liners minimize ground settling.
Graveside Service - A service to commemorate the deceased held at the cemetery prior to burial.
Interment - Burial in the ground, inurnment, or entombment.
Inurnment - The placing of cremated remains in an urn.
Mausoleum - A building in which human remains are buried (entombed).
Niche - A space in a columbarium, mausoleum, or niche wall to hold an urn.
Urn - A container to hold cremated human remains. It can be placed in a columbarium or mausoleum, or it can be buried in the ground.
Vault - A grave liner that completely encloses a casket.
Sudden Deaths are a shock to you and your family.
When a death suddenly occurs in your family, you will be faced with important tasks and decision-making during a very difficult time. You may not know what to do or when to begin making arrangements, and bearing the responsibility can be overwhelming. We have compiled the following list to help guide you through the steps you will need to take when a death has occurred. Your funeral director will help coordinate all of the details when you meet for an arrangement conference.
1. After a death has occurred, notify Locust Hill Cemetery at 973-366-0038 or your funeral director. The following are some questions that we may ask when you call:
o What is the full name of the deceased?
o What is the location of the deceased (Hospital, Nursing Facility or Residence)?
o What is your name, address and telephone number?
o What is the name, address and phone number of the next-of-kin?
We will help you contact your funeral home, who will generally assist in organize the following items:
o Clothing for the deceased.
o Social security number of the deceased.
o The deceased's birth date and city and state of birth.
o The deceased's parents names, including mother's maiden name.
o Information about the deceased's education.
o Marital status of the deceased.
o Veteran's discharge papers or Claim Number.
o A recent photograph of the deceased.
o Pre-arrangement paperwork (if applicable).
o Cemetery lot information (if applicable).
2. Contact your clergy. Decide on a time and place for the funeral or memorial service (the services may be held at the funeral home).
3. The funeral home will assist you in:
o preparing the necessary Social Security forms.
o determining the number of copies of the death certificates that you will need and will order them for you.
o write the obituary and submit it to the newspaper.
4. Make a list of family, friends and business colleagues, and notify each by phone. You may wish to use a "branching" system: make a few phone calls to other relatives or friends and ask each of them to make a phone call or two to specific people.
5. Decide on an appropriate charity to which gifts may be made (church, hospice, library, organization, school).
6. Gather obituary information, including a photo, age, place of birth, cause of death, occupation, college degrees, memberships held, military service, outstanding work and a list of survivors in the immediate family. Include the time and place of the funeral services. The funeral home will usually write the obituary and submit it to the newspaper(s).
7. Arrange for family members and/or close friends to take turns answering the door or phone. Keeping a careful record of visitors and flower deliveries will make it easier to thank people later on.
8. Delegate special needs of the household, such as cleaning, food preparation, etc., to friends and family who offer their help.
9. Arrange for child care, if necessary.
10. Select pallbearers and notify the funeral home. (People with heart or back difficulties may be named honorary pallbearers).
11. Plan for the disposition of flowers after the funeral (to a church, hospital or rest home).
12. Notify insurance companies of the death.
13. Locate the will and notify the lawyer and executor.
14. Carefully check all life and casualty insurance and death benefits, including Social Security, credit union, trade union, fraternal, and military. Check on possible income for survivors from these sources.
15. Check promptly on all debts and installment payments, including credit cards. Some may carry insurance clauses that will cancel them. If there is to be a delay in meeting payments, consult with creditors and ask for more time before the payments are due.
16. If the deceased was living alone, notify the utility companies and landlord and tell the post office where to send the mail.