funeral home in Clarksville, TN

Funeral Home Lingo

Sometimes funeral homes can be confusing. What do all the terms mean? Use this list of important funeral home terminology and lingo to be better prepared in the event of the loss of a loved one, or to better plan for your eventual passing and funeral in a funeral home in Clarksville, TN.

  1. Bereaved: The deceased’s loved ones or immediate family.
  2. Burial Certificate: A legal document authorizing burial. The same documents apply to cremations, and it made by your local government.
  3. Death Certificate: A document proving the cause of death, generally issued by the deceased’s doctor.
  4. Columbarium: A wall with niches or holes in which cremation urns are housed.
  5. Committal Service: A service in which the body is buried or interred.
  6. Cremains: Another word for cremated remains.
  7. Crematory: The furnace in which bodies are cremated. It can also refer to the building that houses the furnace.
  8. Death Notice: An article or newspaper section announcing someone’s death and providing funeral or memorial details.
  9. Embalm: Preserving a dead body by running preservative fluids through the arteries and veins.
  10. Eulogy: A speech praising, remembering, and celebrating the deceased’s life.
  11. Exhume: Digging up the remains of someone who was already buried.
  12. Flower Car: The car or vehicle used to transport the flowers from the church and/or cemetery to the funeral home.
  13. Funeral Director: The man or woman who works with the bereaved to plan and execute a funeral service and all accompanying details. Generally, funeral directors maintain or run funeral homes.
  14. Funeral Spray: A floral tribute traditionally given to the bereaved at a funeral.
  15. Grave Liner: A wooden, metal, or concrete casing that holds the casket in the ground. Grave liners help prevent the ground around the grave from sinking for safety and help keep the grass above the grave level as the earth settles for aesthetics.
  16. Pallbearers: Family, friends, or religious members that help carry the casket.
  17. Memorial Service: A service held to honor the deceased when the body is not present.
  18. Mortuary: Another word for a funeral home.
  19. Obituary: A death notice in a newspaper or on a website that gives a small biography of the deceased and often includes a photo.
  20. Plot: A piece of land, usually owned by an individual or a family, that’s reserved for two or more graves.
  21. Reposing Room: A room in a funeral home that stores the body until the burial or funeral.
  22. Vault: Almost synonymous with grave liner, but vaults tend to be more expensive. Vaults are usually made of wood, metal or concrete.
  23. Viewing: The time at which friends, family or funeral-goers can view the casket.

The more you prepare now, the easier your experience in a Clarksville, TN funeral home will be. If you want more information, you can reach out to Sykes Funeral Home & Crematory. We offer a wide range of services designed to help you through your time of loss. Give us a call or pay us a visit today to learn more.

cremation services in Clarksville, TN

Save Money on Cremation Services

Losing a family member or loved one is never easy. Combine this stress with the financial aspect of paying for cremation services in Clarksville, TN and you’ve got one big cocktail of stress and pain. But it doesn’t have to be that way. There are ways you can cut cremation costs while still giving an honorable and respectful goodbye to your lost loved one.

Even simple cremations cost money, not including the costs of services and other products. There is no shame in looking for help with paying for or lowering the cost of cremations. Here are three ways to do just that:

  1. Preplanning – Check the deceased’s papers and information to see if they made any plans to help pay for their cremation. They might have put in place things such as prepaying programs, funeral insurance, life insurance, and payable-on-death bank accounts.
  2. Fund Raising – Don’t be afraid to ask for help from your community, neighborhood, friends or other family. You’d be surprised how quickly people will chip in. Get creative with fund raising like car washes or bake sales, church groups or donations, memorial funds at the deceased’s workplace or bank, and crowd funding websites like GoFundMe.com or GiveForward.com. Social media is also a great tool to make your need known and get more people involved. Don’t be afraid to share any fund raising or write posts about your need.
  3. Government Assistance – Local, state and even federal government programs can help pay for funerals and cremations. Check with your local social service, county treasurer, or public fiduciary to see if any systems are in place. These programs have varying requirements, especially since local government budgets are tight, and they are making such programs more difficult to qualify for. Be sure to double check that you are eligible. The Social Security Administration can also provide assistance. Call to report a death and you may be eligible for a lump sum of $225 or other survivor benefits. Other federal programs that can help are Medicare, Medicaid and the Veteran’s Administration, The Bureau of Indian Affairs and The Railroad Retirement Board.

If you still can’t get enough funding, there are tons of low-cost cremation options you can choose from, including:

  • Host the memorial service at home, the community center, church or other religious establishment
  • Bring pot-luck food for the service
  • Choose body donation to a medical school or other organization (Science Care is the world’s largest body donor program)
  • Look into direct cremations
  • Bury the cremains on family land or a family plot

If you need more information on any of these ways to save money on cremation services or would like to learn more about Clarksville, TN cremations, Sykes Funeral Home & Crematory is here to help. We offer a wide range of services with an even wider range of price points. We are here to help you in your time of loss, no matter what your budget. Call us today to learn more about what we can do for you.

funeral homes in Clarksville, TN

American Funeral Home History

There are lots of funeral homes in Clarksville, TN and the rest of the USA, but where did they come from? Most people are unaware of America’s rich funeral home history, but it’s actually quite fascinating.

It starts in a very interesting place. Almost everyone stayed close to home before the mid 1800s, so when they died their bodies could be displayed in the family parlor until it was time for burial. Since there wasn’t any delay from death to display to burial, the bodies didn’t need any sort of preservation. In fact, this tradition of hosting funerals in the home’s parlor is where the term “funeral parlor comes from.” This all changed in 1865 when President Lincoln was assassinated.

Due to his nearly nationwide popularity, heads of state decided to bring his body on a national funeral procession. Since this trip took several weeks, his body had to be embalmed to slow decomposition. After seeing President Lincoln be embalmed, people all across the USA decided embalming was a good idea. With embalming popularity growing, people were given the opportunity to expand their funeral traditions outside the home.

Bodies were more easily transported and displayed, so funerals could be held later after death allowing for more people to attend. Since more people attended, it was easier to host the service in a neutral place. The Bucktrout family in Virginia witnessed a growing need for places to host funerals and rose to the occasion. Originally coffin and cabinet manufacturers, this family expanded their business to include funeral home services, just like those we have today.

The Bucktrout family opened America’s first modern funeral home. Funeral homes were labeled as such because undertakers, or funeral directors as we now call them, usually operated their business out of their home. The 1900s saw even more growth in the funeral home business. This large expansion called for formal training for funeral directors in order to streamline the business model and help the businesses grow by changing the conversation.

The National Funeral Directors Association was formed in the early 1900s to help consumers view the members as professionals. Coffin makers, florists, life insurance agencies and other connected fields also blossomed, helping funeral homes become what they are today. By 1920, there were around 24,469 funeral homes in the United States, showing a 100% growth in less than 80 years.

Like many other United States institutions, funeral homes grew out of Christian roots. Immigration laws began to relax in the 1960s, and other cultures slowly became more accepted. This influx of new beliefs created a market for funerals, and once again funeral homes stepped up. They began offering services for other ethnic and religious groups from Vietnamese and Eastern European to Buddhism and Hinduism.

Sykes Funeral Home & Crematory is honored to be a part of this grand tradition. We are a Clarksville, TN funeral home offering many services designed to help in times of loss. Call us today to learn more.

cremation service in Clarksville, TN

Interesting and Helpful Cremation Service Products

From caskets and urns to much more, you can purchase just about anything to go with a cremation service in Clarksville, TN. Some products, however, are not about looking flashy or spending money. Some are there to help.

You can find products that allow for personalization after the cremation like:

  • Urns: You may choose to keep the deceased’s ashes in an urn. There are many different shapes, styles, colors and sizes of urns to choose from, so it’s not that hard to find one that suits your preferences and needs. Some urns are basic but dignified, while others are personalized with engravings, paintings and other decoration.
  • Memorial Stationary: Make the cremation service itself even more special with custom stationary featuring photos of the deceased, meaningful quotes, or a simple decoration. You can use this stationary for the guest book at the service, or to write thank you cards on later. You can also find memorial folders, registry books, bookmarks, prayer cards, acknowledgement cards and more.
  • Final Resting Place: There are lots of creative and special ways to put a cremated loved one to rest. These include:
      • Scattering: Scatter your loved one’s remains freely outdoors. You may also hire a specialist to scatter them in the ocean or even in the sky.
      • Columbarium: You may house the deceased in an outdoor niche above ground designed to hold urns.

But the best products can make your loved one’s cremation and service much more unique, memorable and creative. This creativity helps make the services respectful for the deceased and meaningful for the living. Some of these products are used before the cremation takes place, like Thumbies. A Thumbie is a custom jewelry or pendant piece that creates a lasting imprint of the deceased’s fingerprint, footprint or handprint. Special Thumbie artists use a cast or image of the actual print to create these lovely keepsakes. You can choose different finishes including silver or gold to make the piece even more unique.

Similar to Thumbies, remembrance jewelry holds part of the deceased inside, so you can carry it with you wherever you go. You can use a small lock of hair, cremated remains, or even soil from somewhere meaningful to be placed inside a locket, bracelet or other jewelry piece. You can also buy a cremation casket. You do need a rigid container in which the body will be cremated. Crematoriums provide a basic container, but you can opt to purchase a more elaborate or special cremation casket to make the cremation more special.

These are just a few of the many cremation products available that make it easy for you to plan a creative, respectful and personalized cremation and memorial for your lost loved one.

If you would like to learn more about common cremation products or have questions about your options for Clarksville, TN cremation services just reach out to Sykes Funeral Home & Crematory. You can stop by and visit us or give is a call as needed.

funeral homes in Clarksville, TN

What Do Funeral Homes Do?

Everyone knows about funeral homes whether from the movies and TV shows or if they’ve attended a service for the loss of a friend, coworker, family member or acquaintance. However, very few people can say exactly what funeral homes do. For starters, funeral homes in Clarksville, TN and beyond offer a wide array of services, but they have a singular goal: helping people in their time of loss.

Grief can make it hard to get through everyday tasks, much less plan a funeral service. That’s where funeral homes come in. The main way funeral homes help people during their time of loss is by helping make arrangements for the deceased and the funeral or memorial service. This includes more menial tasks like processing the death certificate as well as more involved services like planning the funeral.

You can rely on the right funeral home to provide the clear-headed logic you need to stay organized and deal with the more menial, legal steps surrounding a death like gathering information for the death certificate like full name and address, date and city of birth, marital status, and occupation. They also aid in recording and collecting documents like account statements, loans and leases, beneficiary information, tax returns, last will, and bill copies to file the death certificate and other legal paperwork. And, when necessary, filing the paperwork and certificates and making contact with legal counsel.

A funeral home will also usually assign you a funeral director. The funeral director will sit down with you and discuss the deceased’s final wishes and how best to memorialize his or her life. You may discuss ways to personalize the funeral, from the deceased’s favorite sports team, music or hobbies to his or her special memories or accomplishments. A funeral home can help you arrange many funeral details such as:

  • Choosing and contacting a religious official for the service
  • Finding a cemetery or crematory
  • Sending out Obituary and Death notices
  • Purchasing a casket, vault, urn or headstone
  • Choosing and buying books, flowers, registries or cards
  • Hosting the service

Some funeral homes also offer continued support and help with grief. Funeral homes often have accesses to grief resources such as contact information for support groups and councilors, articles and information on grief and the best ways to deal with it, and more specific help for special grief situations like losing a child or a traumatic or unexpected loss. A good funeral home can even help you better personalize the funeral arrangements by helping you plan and execute things like dove or butterfly releases, monument sales, memorial shirts, customized photos or video presentations, limousine services, and even burials at sea

Are you looking for a Clarksville, TN funeral home? Sykes Funeral Home & Crematory offers services such as these. We would be more than happy to help you in your time of loss. If you want to learn more about funeral homes in general, or want more information about our particular services, please give us a call.

Funeral homes in Clarksville, TN

Funeral Home Etiquette

Funeral homes in Clarksville, TN and the rest of the country can be stressful and intimidating. For starters, it’s never easy to go through a loss. However, it can be even harder to know how to act in a funeral home.

From how to dress and where to sit to what to say and everything in between, it’s hard to know exactly what the proper etiquette is, especially when it comes to being respectful of the proceedings and family members. Use this guide to help you navigate funeral home etiquette.

Funeral homes are serious places, and your attire should be as well. Unless otherwise noted or dictated by culture, keep your clothing conservative and in darker colors. The first two rows of seats are oftentimes reserved for the close friends and family, but other than that the seating plans are usually open. Try and remain seated throughout the service, unless dictated by the MC. This same basic rule applies to a graveside service, as the chairs right by the grave are typically reserved for family.

Turn off your phone. If you don’t want to turn if off completely, at least put it on silent or Do Not Disturb for the duration of the service. If you must take a call, do step outside as looking down at your phone or checking messages inside the funeral home is disrespectful. Along those same lines, people often do not bring children to funeral homes for fear they will be a distraction or disruption. Use your best judgment with your child, but toddlers and babies should generally stay at home with a sitter.

Funeral homes can be religious places during services, and this may make some people uncomfortable. If the ceremony has religious aspects that do not match your own or make you uncomfortable, simply remain silent and respectfully engaged. Remember, you are there to honor the deceased not make a religious statement.

There might not be many chances for you to speak with the family of the deceased at the funeral home, but if you do have an opportunity be sure to take it. All you need to do is express sympathy for their loss. If you knew the deceased well and feel it’s appropriate, you may say something more personal about the deceased. However, keep it short and simple as the family most likely has lots of other guests to attend to.

Do keep in mind that the above are general guidelines and do not necessarily apply to every funeral home experience. Use your best judgment, and always try and follow the family’s lead when it comes to etiquette. When in doubt, lean in towards the conservative side.

Do you have more questions about Clarksville, TN funeral home etiquette or services? All you have to do is reach out to Sykes Funeral Home & Crematory. We have years of industry experience we would love to put at your disposal. Please pay us a visit at 424 Franklin St Clarksville, TN 37040 or give us a call at (931) 647-1562 to learn more about what we can do for you.

cremation services in Clarksville, TN

The Basics of Cremation Services

Though cremation services in Clarksville, TN have only recently become more popular, they’ve been around for thousands of years. But do you really know what cremation is? Why should you choose one for your deceased loved one or your own passing?

Let’s start at the beginning. The cremation process can be broken down to three main parts: body preparation, the actual cremation, and processing the ashes.

  1. Body Preparation – There are a lot of steps that need to take place before a body is cremated. First, a funeral director needs to obtain a cremation authorization document, usually signed by closest surviving family members. The funeral director then goes through a series of checks to ensure proper body identification. Next, the body is processed to remove any items that the family doesn’t want cremated with the body, or things that cannot be cremated with the body like jewelry and medical devices, especially pacemakers.
  2. Cremation – Once prepared, the body is put inside a cremation casket and checked again for proper identification. A metal identification tag that won’t burn or melt is also placed inside the cremation casket to ensure the remains end up with the right family after cremation. Cremation chambers are usually heated with fire and built from fire resistant bricks and special masonry compound designed to stand up to extremely high temperatures. The cremation casket holding the body is placed directly into the cremation chamber. At the height of the process, the chamber reaches over 1800 degrees Fahrenheit. It usually takes 2 hours for a body to be reduced to bone fragments and ash, but the time can vary depending on factors such as the size of the body, type of cremation casket, or even the percentage of body fat to lean muscle.
  3. Processing – After the incineration, the remains are left to cool inside the chamber for about 30 minutes. They are then processed and checked again for any remaining medical debris and identification. The cooled bone fragments go through a processor that grinds them down into fine ash. This final ash is what is returned to the family for funeral services or interment.

There are many different ways families deal with their loved one’s cremated remains. Some of these include trenching, or burying the ashes in a shallow grave; casting, or tossing the cremated remains into the wind; raking, a process in which the ashes are poured over loose earth and raked into the soil; aerial scattering, an expensive option, is when a professional pilot takes the ashes into the air and scatters them from the sky; water scattering, or simply scattering the ashes into a body of water; and ringing, a ceremony in which a loved one places the ashes in ring around a tree or home.

Do you have more Clarksville, TN cremation service questions? All you have to do is get in touch with Sykes Funeral Home & Crematory. You can stop by and visit us at 424 Franklin St Clarksville, TN 37040 or call us at (931) 647-1562.

funeral home in Clarksville, TN

Burials and Funeral Homes

Whether you’re having a traditional funeral at a funeral home in Clarksville, TN or are doing something more original, you need to choose what kind of body disposition you and the deceased want. One option is burial.

There is a lot more to burials than you would think and learning as much as you can will help you be more prepared to make the necessary plans and decisions. Use this list of frequently asked burial questions and their answers to get started on learning more about burials.

  • Are There Laws About Burial Timelines? The short answer is no, there are no federal laws requiring a body to be buried within a specific amount of time. However, there are many steps that need to be taken before a burial can take place, so it’s a good idea to get started as soon as you’re able after a death so your loved one can have a dignified funeral service and burial.
  • Why is Burial Necessary in the First Place? While there are many disposition options besides burial, a burial is a wonderful way to remember the deceased in a constructive way. A big part of the human grief process is memorializing the dead, and a permanent burial place serves as a focal point remembering your lost loved one. A permanent resting place also gives the deceased a dignified ending while still allowing his or her memory to live on.
  • Is Ground Burial the Only Option? There are several options besides traditional ground burial. These include mausoleums, lawn crypts, and cremation internments like urns and columbarium.
  • Will My Cemetery Close When It Runs Out of Land? Cemeteries do run out of land, but they usually do not close when that happens. They generally remain open for family members to visit graves and can even have guided tours of historic resting places.
  • What Are Burial Vaults? And Do I Need One? Burial vaults are the outside container that holds a coffin or casket. Their primary function is to protect the casket and help maintain the grave’s integrity, so the surface doesn’t sink in. Most active cemeteries do require burial vaults to keep the cemetery ground intact and safe.
  • What Will Happen to My Loved One’s Grave in the Distant Future? Cemeteries are traditionally thought of as permanent, and the land designation is often in perpetuity. You can visit graves that are more than a hundred years old all over the country. It’s nice to think that your loved one’s grave will still be around and treasured by coming generations.

Sykes Funeral Home & Crematory is a Clarksville, TN funeral home that offers a range of burial, cremation and funeral services. If you have any more questions about burials or would like to learn more about other aspects of funerals, please do contact us. You can stop by and visit us at 424 Franklin St Clarksville, TN 37040 or give us a call at (931) 647-1562 today. We are happy to help.

cremations in Clarksville, TN

Cremation Service History

Though cremations in Clarksville, TN have become more popular in recent years, they aren’t anything new. Historians believe that humans started burning their dead as early as 3000 B.C, as they have discovered pottery shards and urns that service as evidence. Cremation became more and more popular around Europe and what we now call the Middle East until Homer’s time, around 800 B.C, when it became the most common disposition method. This rise in cremation is assumed to be because of the growing number of dead from both war and disease.

Ancient Romans stored cremated remains in decorated urns like we do today, so, by 395 A.D, cremation and the Roman Empire were at their peaks. However, the early Christians still practiced traditional Jewish body disposition, and therefore disapproved of cremation. This proved to be ancient cremation’s downfall, because when Constantine made Christianity the official Roman religion in 400 A.D, the practice almost disappeared in favor of the traditional Jewish burial.

Cremation drifted out of history until around 1873 when an Italian professor displayed his new cremation chamber model at the Vienna Exposition. His new invention jump-started the cremation revolution on both sides of the Atlantic. The first modern cremation chamber in the United States was built in Washington, Pennsylvania in 1876 by Dr. Julius LeMoyne, with the second not far behind in Lancaster, PA in 1884.

Soon, crematories were being built all across the US, and by the year 1900 there were 20 in operation. The practice took off even more when, in 1913, Dr. Hugo Erichsen started the Cremation Association of America as a way to spread to word about this modern way of safely and hygienically disposing of bodies.

The foundation was originally made up of doctors with concerns about the spread of diseases from whole-body burials to living humans. This belief and the foundation continued to foster cremation popularity until the 1920s when it was proven that whole body burials, when done properly were just as safe for the public’s health. After that discovery, the Cremation Association of America switched gears and began promoting cremation not as a health choice but as a personal choice. The foundation changed its name to Cremation Association of North America (CANA), in 1975, and is still around today.

Cremation has been becoming more and more popular since the 1980s in America and around the world. This rise is due to a number of factors such as cost, environmental concerns, creativity, religion and more. According to CANA, there were over 2,100 crematories in use in the US in 2009 performing over 9,000 cremations a year, and the number is still going up.

While traditional burial is still the most commonly seen disposition method, studies show that might not always be the case.

If you would like to learn more about Clarksville, TN cremation services Sykes Funeral Home & Crematory is here to help. Please stop by and visit us at 424 Franklin St Clarksville, TN 37040 or give us a call at (931) 647-1562 to learn more about what we can do for you.

cremation in Clarksville, TN

Why Preplan Cremation Services?

While it’s never easy to think about your eventual passing, preplanning your cremation in Clarksville, TN is one of the best things you can do for your family, and for yourself. After all, preplanning for your cremation can help both you and your loved ones in many different ways.

The first step to preplanning a cremation service is to make some choices. Think about what you want for your cremation, and be prepared to make choices such as:

  • Choose what to do with your remains, from burial and scattering to more non-traditional methods of body disposal like a biodegradable urn or water internment.
  • Pick out your memorial theme, like military, religious, or non-traditional.
  • Decide between a funeral home or crematory for your cremation and service.
  • Detail memorial or funeral specifications like preferred music, desired readings, special decorations and video displays.
  • Choose your final resting place. There are a ton of options, but the main ones include: a family plot or mausoleum, columbarium, or cremation urn.

But why should you preplan for your cremation service? These are just a few of the ways preplanning your cremation can help both you and your family:

  • Financial Responsibility: You can plan for how to cover the cremation costs in advance to make it easier for your family’s bank accounts and stress levels. Look into cremation insurance or funeral trusts to help ensure financial ease for your cremation and service.
  • Easing Your Family’s Burden: Let your family know exactly what you want for your cremation so they don’t have to guess what to do after you’re gone, or spend time making painful decisions when they should be grieving with loved ones.
  • Creating a Meaningful Service: Memorial services are an important part of the grieving process, but your loved ones might miss out on the important benefits if they are too busy planning the event. Preplan so they don’t have to.
  • Making Sure Your Wishes Are Met: Make sure you get the exact cremation and memorial service you want by taking care of the details and clearly laying them out for your friends and family. This way they won’t be able to argue or disagree.
  • Maintaining Self-Reliance: Taking charge of your memorial services and cremation allows you to maintain control and independence when you might otherwise lose them. This is good for your mental health at the end of your life and gives you more self-reliance.

Preplanning your cremation isn’t as hard or overwhelming as you would think once you get started, and it can only help you and your loved ones after your death.

If you do need more assistance with preplanning, Sykes Funeral Home & Crematory is here to help. We offer a wide range of Clarksville, TN cremation services and have years of experience ready to put at your disposal. Please stop by and visit us at 424 Franklin St Clarksville, TN 37040 or give us a call at (931) 647-1562 for more information on what we can do for you in your time of loss.