Chapter 3: If you are planning a funeral or memorial service

Introduction

It was comforting to me to have so many of my daughter’s colleagues and friends show up to honour her. I had not realized just how respected she was, and how many lives she had touched in her work.

During the first few days after a death, grieving family members or friends have many demands placed on them in preparation for a funeral. For example,

  • What kind of funeral should it be?
  • Should the person be buried or cremated? What do you need to buy from the funeral home?
  • Where do you arrange for a grave marker?

People looking back on the period right after a death often wonder how they managed to cope with the all the decision-making required. Some families discuss the dying person’s wishes for a funeral well in advance, but in many families, decisions are made after the death has occurred.