Adelphi, MD cremations

Famous Celebrity Graves

Even if Adelphi, MD cremations don’t include burial in a plot or an urn garden, burial sites of famous people who have died are places that people visit regularly. Some of them become shrines over time, as people leave flowers and other things to mark their sojourn there.

One famous celebrity grave is that of Princess Diana in Althorp, Northamptonshire (UK). Princess Diana caught the world’s attention when she became the bride of Prince Charles in the early 1980’s, and she held the world’s attention until her untimely death in a car accident in 1997. As news of her death spread around the globe, thousands of flowers were brought to be laid outside Buckingham Palace as her adoring public came to pay respects. However, Princess Diana’s final resting place is private, on a small island in a lake in Althrop. While only immediate family is allowed to visit her actual gravesite, visitors can go to the memorial built for her that sits beside the lake.

Another famous celebrity grave is that of Elvis Presley at Graceland in Memphis, TN. Graceland is often a tourist destination, which makes Elvis Presley’s grave on the most visited in the world (more than half a million people each year). Presley’s grave (as well as the graves of some of his family members) is located in Graceland’s Meditation Garden. Visitors gather to leave gifts, pray, or sing famous Presley hits.

Jim Morrison, founder and lead singer of The Doors, died in Paris on July 3, 1971 after ingesting a large amount of alcohol and drugs. Whether it was an intentional or unintentional overdose, the 27-year-old singer joined, in an astonishingly short space of time, two other 27-year-old rock celebrities, Jimi Hendrix (September 18, 1970) and Janis Joplin (October 4, 1970). His grave is enclosed by a metal fence in the Pere Lachaise cemetery in Paris, adorned with a simple headstone engraved with “True to himself.”

A luminary from the world of mathematics and science, Sir Isaac Newton’s grave is located in Westminster Abbey in London. Marked by a spectacular monument that epitomizes design styles of the 1700’s, Newton’s grave also has a sculpture of him leaning against scientific books while the globe that hangs over him shows the star constellations and each star of the Zodiac. It’s a truly beautiful grave to visit and many people flock to it year after year.

Reggae legend Bob Marley’s grave is located in Nine Mile, Jamaica. Within a gated compound that contains Marley’s childhood home and the Bob Marley Museum is Marley’s mausoleum. Guided tours are conducted around the compound, but photography within the mausoleum itself is prohibited. February 6, which is Marley’s birthday, is a national holiday in Jamaica and a Bob Marley musical festival is held by fans close to Nine Mile annually.

The renowned poet and bard, William Shakespeare, is entombed at Holy Trinity Church, in Shakespeare’s home of Stratford-upon-Avon, which is dedicated to all things Shakespeare. He is buried not far from where he was born, so going from cradle to grave didn’t require a great deal of distance. His gravestone reads: “Good friend, for Jesus’ sake forbeare, To dig the dust enclosed here; Blessed be the man that spares these stones, And cursed be he that moves my bones.”

If you’d like to learn more about Adelphi, MD cremations, you can talk with our knowledgeable team at Donald V. Borgwardt Funeral Home, P.A. You can visit our funeral home at 4400 Powder Mill Rd., Beltsville, MD, 20705, or you can call us today at (301) 937-1707.

Greenbelt, MD cremations

Returning to Work after the Loss of a Loved One

Going back to work after Greenbelt, MD cremations is probably one of the toughest things adults have to do when someone dies. Unless a company has a generous bereavement policy, most employees get to take off three “free” days of work. They may, in the United States, be able to get more time off using personal time off (PTO) if their employer allows them to be gone longer than that (and many employers discourage it), and when they run out of PTO, then they can take up to 12 weeks of unpaid time off under the Family Leave Act, if the employer allow them to.

Since most Americans are hired as at-will employees, employers have the control over what they will allow as a reasonable amount of time away from the job (despite PTO and federal legislation in the Family Leave Act) before they replace the employee. So, whether a person is ready to return to work or not, most people head back to the office after their three days for bereavement are over.

But anyone who has experienced the loss of someone near and dear to them knows that three days is just the beginning of the grieving process, and trying to work while the intensity of grief is gripping every thought, every moment creates a tremendous amount of stress and anxiety (work will often be late or just unfinished and completed work will have errors, which is, quite frankly, not the person’s fault, but poor employment policies that don’t allow adequate time for people to get some semblance of their emotion balance back after they’ve lost somebody).

When people return to work after the death of loved ones, their emotions will be raw. It will be an almost surreal experience to be so emotionally taxed, in so much pain, and in the tight grip of grieve and see the workplace just humming along as usual.

Although some people may offer condolences, it’s far more likely that they’ll be expected to pick up right where they left off three days before. That may mean a looming deadline has to be met and the leadership team is breathing down their necks to get it done (and, depending on personalities, they may not be nice people to begin with, so this pressure will make them less nice and more hurtful). It may mean they’re expected to attend and participate in staff meetings or other kinds of meetings where, again, life goes on as it always has and whatever tenor normally accompanies these is the same, and that may be offensive in light of what the bereaved are experiencing.

Although it will be hard, there are a few strategies that can make things a little less hard.

One thing is to let the Human Resources (HR) department or manager know how they want to handle the death in terms of coworkers. Most people would rather not discuss it at work because it’s so emotional, so HR and/or management can pass that along and make things a little easier.

People who are grieving need to rehearse a few standard replies to small talk that will not make them seem rude, but will enable them to keep going and not have to engage in it for any length of time.

One of the problems will be focus, but grieving people can develop strategies for being more focused. To-do lists will help with organization and breaking projects down into bite-sized tasks – in order – will make them easier to tackle and to accomplish.

Another great strategy is to find a safe zone – somewhere quiet where grieving people can be alone. If the workplace has areas outside where it’s easy to walk uninterrupted, most people will find this to be one of the most therapeutic ways to get through the day, and the days ahead.

For more strategies for returning to work after Greenbelt, MD cremations you can talk with our expert staff at Donald V. Borgwardt Funeral Home, P.A. You can drop by our funeral home at 4400 Powder Mill Rd., Beltsville, MD, 20705, or you can contact us today at (301) 937-1707.

cremations in Beltsville, MD

Understanding What “Dead” Means

Death happens before cremations in Beltsville, MD. However, there is more than one kind of death that can happen before people are officially declared dead.

One of these kinds of death is brain death. If there is no neurological activity, then a person is declared brain dead (which is considered being legally dead). However, through technology and medicine, the body can be kept alive, even though the brain is not functioning at all. For all intents and purposes, the body can be kept alive for years and years using artificial means.

Although it’s rare that people who have suffered brain death are kept on life support for an extended amount of time, it is very common for people who are brain dead to be kept alive for a short period of time, especially if they are organ donors, in order to keep the organs healthy until organ transplants can be arranged. When everything’s in place, then they are taken off life support, and the organs are harvested for transport to the recipients.

Another kind of death is circulatory death. This takes place when the heart stops beating, and blood stops circulating in the body to vital organs, including the brain (brain death can actually be the result of circulatory death). This is commonly known as cardiac arrest and, unless a person has a Do Not Resuscitate order in place, emergency responders or hospital staff will attempt to get the heart beating again, using CPR, adrenaline, and electric shock.

The longer the heart is not beating, the more likely that brain damage or brain death will occur (six minutes is the top amount of time that most medical experts say the brain can go before damage starts). If the heart is restarted before the brain dies completely, then significant brain damage has occurred, which leaves the person in a persistent vegetative state.

A persistent vegetative state is often referred to as “chronic wakefulness without awareness.” People in a persistent vegetative state are legally considered to be alive, so unless they have a living will that specifies that they don’t want any extraordinary measures taken, they are given feeding tubes and kept alive.

One of the most high-profile cases involving a persistent vegetative state was that of Terri Schiavo in the late part of the 20th century. Schiavo suffered cardiac arrest in 1990 and, as a result, was left with severe neurological damage before she was resuscitated. The hospital put a feeding tube in and kept her alive. Her parents and husband fought for 15 years to have the feeding tube removed because they all stated that Schiavo would not have wanted life prolonged with absolutely no chance of recovery (the 26-year-old did not have a living will, which is why it’s important for everyone to have one, regardless of age).

The state courts agreed with Schiavo’s husband and parents, but the Florida state legislature passed a bill that was known as Terri’s Law that gave then-Governor Jeb Bush the authority to prevent the feeding tube from being removed. The courts and the state legislature went back and forth, until Congress passed legislation that allowed the federal courts to intervene in the case. Schiavo’s feeding tube was removed on March 18, 2005, and she died 13 days later. The autopsy of her brain showed massive loss of neurons, with her brain weighing half of what a normal human brain weighs, and the medical examiner concluded that severe damage had left Schiavo blind and incapable or emotions or thinking.

If you’d like to learn about cremations in Beltsville, MD, you can talk with our knowledgeable team at Donald V. Borgwardt Funeral Home, P.A. You can visit our funeral home at 4400 Powder Mill Rd., Beltsville, MD, 20705, or you can call us today at (301) 937-1707.

cremations in College Park, MD

Morticians: A History

Although a mortician’s services won’t be used in cremations in College Park, MD, they are an integral part of funeral homes and the services they provide. The fact is that some professions – and that of morticians is one – have serious PR problems when it comes to describing the work they do, especially when people don’t like to think about the nuts and bolts of the job.

Janitors are custodial technicians, garbage collectors have become waste management engineers and bartenders are mixologists. These names add glamour to jobs that don’t always have that much glamour involved in the actual work performed.

In much the same way, that is how morticians got their job title. Let’s clarify what morticians do: they prepare bodies, including embalming them, for visitations and burials. They were formerly called undertakers (which originally meant the person who undertook to make all the funeral arrangements but came to designate embalmers). However, the job was so closely tied to death that it took on a dark and sinister meaning as time passed.

This particular job in the funeral process is not very sexy (with the possible exception of Frederico Diaz, the mortician who talks to the dead in the HBO series Six Feet Under) nor is it one that many people are likely to choose as a profession.

The name change from undertakers to morticians was first proposed in 1895 in The Embalmers’ Monthly, a funeral business trade magazine. It sounded more user-friendly and it distanced itself from the business at hand, which was death.

During the Civil War, embalming became a standard funeral practice out of military necessity. Until then, only medical schools used embalming to preserve cadavers for research. After President Abraham Lincoln was embalmed for his trip (13 days) from Washington, DC to Springfield, IL where he would be buried, embalming became customary as part of funeral arrangements for burial.

It is a professional industry, and not one that just anyone can do. There is much education and training involved because morticians not only embalm the body, but they also handle cosmetic repairs and shaping (especially in the face, which can be contorted in death), washing and dressing the body, and washing and styling the hair.

Because it was a professional trade, practitioners wanted to leave the undertakers of the past (most of whom had little to no education) behind. This called for a new job title: mortician. The word mortician comes from the Latin root for death, mort, combined with the suffix from physician. The new word identified embalmers as scientifically-trained with strong links to the medical community.

Sometimes job title changes work and sometimes they don’t. Nobody liked the new job titled except for morticians. Word critics claimed that the title was loftier than the profession and it had an air of affectedness to it.

Word scholars didn’t like it because they said it violated the rules of forming new words. All the other words that ended with the same sound took the profession or things (mathematic, electric, physic, etc.) and added ian to the end. Mortician was the exception because the suffix was ician. Therefore, it was not a word.

But the morticians proved they were stronger than the critics, and the job title is still around today. Their word formation has been extended in the English language, not always well or successfully, but one that endures is beautician.

If you’d like more information about cremations in College Park, MD you can talk with our expert staff at Donald V. Borgwardt Funeral Home, P.A. You can drop by our funeral home at 4400 Powder Mill Rd., Beltsville, MD, 20705, or you can contact us today at (301) 937-1707.

Adelphi, MD cremations

Death Abroad: Understanding Repatriation Services

Before Adelphi, MD cremations, when a loved one is traveling overseas, either for business or pleasure and they suddenly die, it can seem as though a million things need to be attended to, even in the midst of grief and shock over losing them.

As easy as it may be to get temporarily paralyzed when a shocking event like the sudden death of someone you love when the death occurs international, time is of the essence. Body repatriation (bring a body from a foreign country back to the United States) requires that a large amount of paperwork and procedures need to be filed or executed as quickly as possible.

The first things that happen when a loved one dies in a foreign country are that the local embassy contacts the State Department when then notifies the closest relatives of the death. The clock begins to tick at this point.

You need to contact the funeral home to assist you from this point on with repatriation services. The first thing the funeral home will do is to execute a “Next-of-Kin Affidavit,” and they will provide a signed “Letter of Instruction” that contains the details of how the body should be repatriated.

If the foreign officials are experiencing difficulty in confirming the identity of the deceased (death may have been a horrible car accident, a fire, or a boating accident where the body is not found right away), the deceased’s family may be asked to provide dental or medical records for the deceased. Because the process for repatriation of a body is different from country to country, the body must be handled according to the laws of the nation where the death happened.

In general, there are three options to choose from for international repatriation services.

The first option includes preparing the body by embalming it and returning it to the United States. A local funeral home in the country where the death took places will handle the embalming process and then have the body shipped back to America. Because many international embalming procedures are not done with the strict standards and regulations required in the United States, a viewing (or visitation) of the body is discouraged.

The second option for international repatriations is to have the body cremation in the country where the death occurred. Most countries, except those that are predominantly Catholic or Muslim, have an abundance of funeral homes that offer cremation. In countries where religious beliefs frown on cremation, there will be a much-limited choice of funeral homes that will offer cremation. The body may have to be transported to another location within the country to have the cremation done.

The third option is having the body buried locally in the nation where the death happened. This is, obviously, probably the least-favored option, but it may be the one that works best for the family. If the country allows foreign nationals to be buried there, then a local burial can be done. The family will work with the local embassy, which will make all the arrangements.

A footnote to international repatriations is that if the deceased is a victim of a crime, the local authorities will investigate, which will likely cause a delay in the body being transported back to the United States. Most of the time, an autopsy will be performed to determine the cause of death.

If you’d like to know more about repatriation services before Adelphi, MD cremations, you can talk with our knowledgeable team at Donald V. Borgwardt Funeral Home, P.A. You can visit our funeral home at 4400 Powder Mill Rd., Beltsville, MD, 20705, or you can call us today at (301) 937-1707.

Greenbelt, MD cremations

What You Can Do with Cremains

After Greenbelt, MD cremations, the family often wonders what to do with the cremains of their loved one. There are many traditional options available.

One traditional option is to simply store the cremains in a decorative urn to display at home. Families who choose this option usually take turns storing the cremains at each family member’s home if they all live near each other. Otherwise a spouse or child will keep it at the main family home.

Another traditional choice is to store an urn with the cremains in a columbarium (a building that contains niches for urns) and marked with a gravestone. A third traditional choice is burying the cremains near a spouse in a cemetery plot or burying the cremains in an urn garden (a designated section in a cemetery just for burial of urns).

More personalized choices, though, are available as well.

Scattering the cremains is highly personalized because the location where the cremains are scattered is significant. It may have been the deceased’s favorite place in the world. It might be the place where an engagement or another important event took place. Sometimes cremains are scattered in a family garden or on family land. It’s important, though, to make sure that it is permissible to scatter cremains in the designated location. For state and national parks, a permit may need to be obtained.

Cremation jewelry (also known as memorial jewelry) is becoming a very popular choice for using a loved one’s cremains. These wearable items contain a small portion of the cremains, either stored in them or infused in them. They can be rings, pendants, bracelets, or necklaces. They keep the loved one near at all times, and this can often give family members comfort and consolation in the aftermath of death.

Another way to personalize the use of cremains is taking the loved one on a final trip. This is not a vacation, but a purposeful trip to destinations that were important to the deceased. Cremains are scattered either in meaningful places on the trip here in the United States or taking the cremains to an international location (either significant in travel or perhaps country of origin or where the deceased’s family lived) to be scattered. Taking cremains on an airplane requires adherence to TSA and airline regulations, but it is a fairly easy process to complete. If cremains is being taken internationally to be scattered, it’s best to check with that country’s embassy to find out what regulations exist and what protocols must be followed.

A fourth personalized way to use cremains is to make a living urn. Cremains are put into a biodegradable container along with seeds for plants or flowers. The container can be planted in a spot where friends and family can come to visit.

A very unusual personalized way to use cremains is as fireworks. The cremains are mixed with fireworks (there are companies that do this). The ensuing fireworks show both memorialize the deceased and scatter the ashes in an amazing way.

A final personalized way to use cremains is to mix a small portion of the cremains with tattoo ink and get a tattoo done with the ink. This option is not for the fainthearted, but it definitely ranks high in uniqueness.

For more ideas about what to do with cremains after Greenbelt, MD cremations you can talk with our expert staff at Donald V. Borgwardt Funeral Home, P.A. You can drop by our funeral home at 4400 Powder Mill Rd., Beltsville, MD, 20705, or you can contact us today at (301) 937-1707.

cremations in Beltsville, MD

Unique Ideas for Memorial Services

If you’re having memorial services after cremations in Beltsville, MD, there are many unique ways that you can honor the memory of your loved one. These allow mourners to gather, participate in personal ways, and give more insights into who the deceased was in life and what was important to them.

A themed memorial service focuses on one aspect of the deceased’s life that they were passionate about or it creates a symbol of their lives.

The first theme approach is centered on the deceased’s passion. That could be volunteering, music, art, sports, family, or anything else. The whole memorial service is fashioned to show the deceased’s relationship with what they cared about in life. For example, if the deceased was an avid reader (or a writer), then reading quotes from their favorite books, plays, or poem could be the theme of the memorial service. Different people could read different things, but everything that’s read should give insight into who the person, how they thought, and what was important to them.

The symbolic theme approach uses a phrase or symbols to capture the essence of who the person was or to say goodbye. For example, if the deceased was environmentally-conscious, a memorial service that includes fresh foods from local growers and producers (farm to table) and donations can be made to environmental causes or a tree can be planted in the deceased’s memory.

Familiar symbols of saying goodbye to a loved one include the dove and releasing balloons. You can create a theme around this by using bird images on the service program and include quotes about the flight to give the imagery of the soul taking flight in an elegant and respectful way.

If a themed memorial service doesn’t really work, there are other ways to create unique memorial services.

One way is to create a memory board where people can write down their favorite memories of the deceased. This is a great way to encourage people to share stories and it gives a lot of solace and comfort to the family. It will also highlight the impact of the deceased on the world around them. The family can keep this and pull it out for comfort when the sad times come during the grieving process.

Another way is to create a video with pictures, quotes, and music to play before or during the memorial service. It is a chronological view of the deceased’s life or it can be a random assortment of the best pictures of them. Include their favorite quotes. And ask music that was special to them or that is special to the family’s memories of them.

Some memorial services are about food. Specifically, everything eaten and drunk during the service is a favorite food of the deceased. These don’t have to be expensive or haute cuisine. Simply incorporate some of the things they liked into snacks or easy dishes. For example, if someone had tomatoes as their favorite food, all that would be needed for this food would be a loaf of bread, sliced tomatoes, and a jar of mayonnaise (with turkey and pork bacon and lettuce on the side).

And a final way to memorialize – this is not a service, but it’s related – a loved one is to plant a tree or adopt a bench in their honor.

If you’re interested in other unique memorial service ideas after cremations in Beltsville, MD, you can talk with our knowledgeable team at Donald V. Borgwardt Funeral Home, P.A. You can visit our funeral home at 4400 Powder Mill Rd., Beltsville, MD, 20705, or you can call us today at (301) 937-1707.

funeral homes in Adelphi, MD

The Purpose of Pallbearers at Funerals

Pallbearers are always a part of funerals at funeral homes in Adelphi, MD. The word pallbearer comes from the decorative heavy cloth used to drape the casket – it’s known as a pall – and the tradition of having pallbearers is almost as old as funerals themselves.  

Regardless of whether the funeral service is open or closed casket, the role of pallbearers is transport the casket. At the end of the funeral service, pallbearers will carry the casket to the hearse before anyone else leaves the service. Once the hearse arrives at the cemetery where the deceased will be buried, pallbearers then carry the casket from the hearse to the gravesite.   

There are usually six to eight pallbearers. They carry the casket using handles on the sides of the casket. It is not unusual in some cultures for pallbearers to carry the casket on their shoulders.  

Choosing pallbearers for the funeral of a deceased loved one is an important part of the service. When deciding who to use as pallbearers, if your deceased loved one did not designate them in advance, think about the people who were closest to your loved one. These might be family members, long-time friends, or close colleagues. You can also choose to appoint pallbearers from organization that the deceased may have belonged to, such as civic groups or the military. Traditionally, because the casket is heavy, pallbearers have been men, but it’s becoming more common for women to be chosen to be pallbearers as well.  

You can also designate people who were close to a deceased love one as honorary pallbearers. These are people who will walk in front or behind the casket as it is being transported. This is generally done for people who were very close to the deceased, but who are unable, for whatever reason, to actually carry the casket itself.  

Take some time to give thoughtful consideration to the people you choose to be pallbearers for your loved one. Consider those who might have been close, but may not be emotionally up to the task of carrying the casket or even being an honorary pallbearer because they are overcome with grief.  

Being a pallbearer is an honor and a way to demonstrate deep respect for the deceased. Being chosen as a pallbearer also means that you had a special place in the deceased’s life and it gives you an opportunity to participate in the funeral process that will take the deceased to their final resting place.  

Pallbearers need to arrive early at the funeral service. There will be a designated area up front where pallbearers will sit (it’s usually the row across the aisle from where the family is sitting).   

Dress conservatively (dark suit and tie for men or dark suit or dress for women). Wear comfortable shoes, since you may be carrying the casket over uneven ground. The funeral home staff will make sure you know how to carry the casket so it doesn’t get dropped during transportation (always a fear among pallbearers).  

Because pallbearers carry out one of the most important roles in funeral services, solemnity, decorum, and respect are key attributes that each of them must display. If you’ve been chosen as a pallbearer and you don’t think you can do it, either physically or emotionally, have a honest discussion with the family of the deceased and offer to help them in some other way. They chose you because you were close to the deceased, and even though you may not be able to fulfill this role in the funeral process, there are many other ways that you can serve the family.   

If you’d like to understand more about the role of pallbearers at funeral homes in Adelphi, MD, you can talk with our expert staff at Donald V. Borgwardt Funeral Home, P.A. You can drop by our funeral home at 4400 Powder Mill Rd., Beltsville, MD, 20705, or you can contact us today at (301) 937-1707.  

cremations in Greenbelt, MD

Understanding Cremations Terminology

The terminology associated with cremations in Greenbelt, MD is important to know to gain insight into the cremation process. Many people know about cremation, but they don’t understand what’s involved and what to expect when cremations are the funeral option that’s chosen. We’ll give you a basic guide to cremation terms.  

Cremation is the process of exposing human remains to intense heat for a period of time to decompose the body down to bone fragments. All metal has to be removed during this process, so the casket itself contains no metal and glasses, watches, and devices like pacemakers are removed before the cremation starts.  

crematorium is the structure where the cremation chamber is housed. These structures may be solely devoted to cremations and funerals or they may offer cremation and funeral services in addition to other types of services that are not funeral-related.  

Cremation chambers are small enclosures that are designed to withstand very high heat and temperatures. They are most often lined with brick or tile. This is where the actual cremation takes place.  

cremation container is the enclosure that the body is cremated in. It can be a fully-combustible casket or a heavy-duty cardboard box. It must be rigid, so it can be easily handled and large enough to fully enclose the body.  

Memorialization refers to how the cremains are handled after the cremation. Cremains are given to the family when the cremation is done, and the family can decide what to do with them. Common options are burying them with previously-deceased family members (usually spouses), scattering them in a special place, storing them in an urn in a columbarium, keeping them in a decorative urn at home, or turning some of the cremains into wearable jewelry.  

An urn is the traditional receptacle for cremains. The history of the use of urns to hold the remains of loved ones goes back as far as the Roman Empire. Urns can be made out of a variety of materials, including wood, glass, and clay, among others. Urns are also high-customizable and many unique and creative options are available.  

Cremation boxes are what the crematorium uses to present the cremains to the family if they have not yet chosen a memorialization option, such as an urn or storage in a columbarium.  

columbarium is a space specifically designed and built to hold cremains. Columbariums have niches where the cremains, in an urn or cremation box, can be placed. A grave marker or gravestone is added to mark the final resting place of a loved ones cremains.  

Scattering gardens are common space outdoor areas that are specifically designated for scattering cremains. The cremains are mixed in with the existing soil. While most scattering gardens are public common spaces, some cemeteries are starting to add them as a place for families to scatter the cremains of their loved ones. 

An interment is the act of putting cremains in a permanent container, such as an urn. The container can then be housed in a mausoleum, a columbarium, or it can be displayed at the family’s home.  

Cremains are the cremated remains of the deceased. These are not ashes, as is commonly assumed, but instead bone fragments – which are all that is left after cremation – ground finely into a powder-like consistency.  

direct cremation is a type of cremation where the body is cremated immediately after death occurs. The body is not embalmed, nor are there viewings, visitations, or funeral services. Often, memorial services are held at a much later date.  

If you’d like to know more about terminology related to cremations in Greenbelt, MD, you can talk with our knowledgeable team at Donald V. Borgwardt Funeral Home, P.A. You can visit our funeral home at 4400 Powder Mill Rd., Beltsville, MD, 20705, or you can call us today at (301) 937-1707.  

cremations in Beltsville, MD

Personalizing Cremations

Personalizing cremations in Beltsville, MD is part a major part of the funeral process. One misconception that causes people to hesitate to choose cremation as their funeral option is that no services – memorial or funeral – can be held if someone is cremated. That’s not true. Personalizing cremations is an integrated part of saying goodbye to someone you love.  

With cremations, there are many options available that can remember and memorialize your loved one.   

One option is to have a funeral service. You may or may not choose to have a casket viewing of the deceased (if you do, it can either be the cremation casket or a casket rented from the funeral home just for the viewing). If you don’t, and it’s before the cremation has taken place, then it will follow a traditional funeral service format, which usually includes secular and/or religious readings, eulogies, and music. If you have the funeral service after cremation, then the urn is usually displayed at the front of the room where the service is being held. 

Another way to personalize cremations is to have a memorial service. These usually take place after the cremation and are designed to be more casual and flexible as the deceased is often remembered in stories and memories. 

You can also personalize cremations by setting up a display that reflects hobbies or personal interests that were important to your loved one. Ideas might range from artwork they did or crafts that they created. Some people are avid sports fans, so you can display the sports memorabilia that your loved one collected. Use your imagination to create a personalized display that captures the essence of your loved one.  

Cremations can also be personalized by creating photo tributes to the deceased. You can do this with a beautiful cardboard background, using pictures that capture key moments in your loved ones live. Write a little bit underneath each photo to give it context (date it was taken, what was happening at the time, and why it’s important) and to make it a special display. You can also create a digital photo album using PowerPoint. PowerPoint lets you add audio, so you can narrate the photo album, or you can simply add some music that was special to your loved one. Once you’ve created the digital photo album, you can set it up to play automatically and you can also save it as a video file that can either be uploaded to YouTube (you’ll have to create a channel) or saved on flash drives for people who may want a copy.  

A fourth way to customize cremations is by the urn you choose to hold your loved one’s cremains. Urns can be engraved or have plaques added with things that highlight your love one’s personality, traits, and interests.  

Even after cremations, you can further personalize and honor your loved one’s memory. You can have an invitation-only ceremony to scatter your loved one’s ashes in the place they chose or a place that was significant to them. You can also turn some of the cremains into jewelry that you can wear all the time.  

If you’re interested in personalizing cremations in Beltsville, MD, you can speak with our empathetic and experienced staff at Donald V. Borgwardt Funeral Home, P.A. You can visit us at our funeral home at 4400 Powder Mill Rd., Beltsville, MD, 20705, or you can call us today at (301) 937-1707.