No matter if a death is sudden, or if it was anticipated, the loss of a loved one makes us feel emotional and overwhelmed. No amount of preparation can fully prepare you for the loss of a loved one. When you are in a heightened emotional state, even the most basic decisions can seem staggering. The following is a rough guideline of what needs to be done within the first 24 hours after death.
When death occurs at home or a place of business
If the person was not under hospice care, the police will have to be notified immediately. The police will be dispatched to the home and place the call to the coroner/medical examiner. From there the coroner/medical examiner will take the body and determine whether further action is necessary. The coroner/medical examiner must release the body before a funeral home can do anything. If the person was under hospice care, contact the hospice representative if they were not present and they will notify family members of what the proper procedures are to follow.
When a death occurs at a hospital/nursing home/hospice facility
The staff of a care facility such as a hospital or a nursing home will notify you and the necessary authorities immediately after a death has occurred. If a funeral home has been provided to the hospital or nursing home, they will be notified at the time of death. If you are present at the hospital when the funeral director arrives, they will ask a few questions about the deceased wishes and set up a time to come into the funeral home to make arrangements, however, if you are not present, a funeral director will contact you by telephone to discuss these arrangements.
Once everything has been cleared with the proper authorities, the next call you place should be to a licensed funeral director. Funeral directors are here to help you obtain a death certificate, transport the body, and in the event pre-planning was not done, select a casket/urn and arrange the funeral/memorial service. The funeral director will also help you notify the employer and insurance company of the deceased to assist with those arrangements. Funeral directors are here to help and advise you and will work very hard to relieve the stress and logistics involved in funeral planning.
Preparing for the meeting...
We understand that following the death of a loved one that families are exhausted and details can seem to be a blur. To help assist you and to make our meeting as easy as possible we have created a simple list of things you could do to prepare for it.
Take a few minutes to fill-in and submit our family information form online through our website at http://www.wallacefuneralhome.com; this will ensure that we have most of the basic information required and will help cut down our meeting time significantly so you and your family can get some much needed rest.
Take a look at our Themes by going to http://vaellaconsulting.com/ilib/home.php and clicking Image Library this theme will be used on your folks stationary such as the Guest Book, Bulletins, Bookmarks, Condolence Binder, Thank You Cards and DVD Covers. By choosing the theme that best represents your loved one, we can ensure that their visitation and funeral arrangements will be personalized and will best represent their personality and character.
Meeting with our Funeral Directors
You should meet with a funeral director within 24 hours of a death to begin to make final arrangements for your loved one. Deciding on these final arrangements may seem like a very daunting task, especially when you are in a heightened emotional state, but, funeral home staff have years of experience dealing with these issues, and strive to ensure everything goes as smoothly as possible.
First the Funeral Director will gather information required for the death certificate. This includes:
- Full Name and Address
- Marital Status
- Date and City of Birth
- Father’s Name, Mother’s Name (including maiden name)
- Name of Spouse (if married or widowed)
Things you can bring...
An updated or favourite photo of your loved one to go with their death notice and their stationary. We can crop and fix most photos if they are too close to others or the background is too busy.
Their Social Insurance Number and Medicare if your able to locate it, this is not time sensitive and can be phone in afterwards if they are too difficult to obtain for our meeting.
Clothes for your loved one if they are to be buried in a casket.
What to Expect when you arrive at the Funeral Home...
With regards to what will happen when you arrive at the funeral home, while we can’t speak to every situation, we can tell you the basics of what to expect.
When you come through the front door, you will be greeted warmly by a staff member. Names will be exchanged, hands shaken, and some words of comfort will be offered.
You will be directed to the funeral director's office or arrangement room and offered a coffee/tea.
We will sit down and begin our arrangement meeting and will be as efficient as possible ensuring to cover all the details and fine points.
In the end...
We will guide you through the entire arrangement process, explaining how you can create a memorable, personal celebration of your loved one’s life. Unlike a birthday or an anniversary, a funeral only happens once, so we will strive to do everything we can to appropriately honour the life of your loved one. Providing you with the information and knowledge we have learned over the years will enable you to select and personalize the most meaningful arrangements. This will ensure that family and friends left behind are able to properly grieve, express, and heal. Remember to take a moment and fill out our online form linked above.
Please feel free to contact us at any time, we are always just a phone call away at 506-433-1176.