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cremation services in Clarksville, TN

2020 Cremation Service Trends for Military Funerals

As cremation services in Clarksville, TN rise in popularity they are starting to show some trends. This is especially true for military funeral and cremation services.

If you are planning a memorial or funeral for a lost loved one that serviced in the military, here are the top cremation trends for 2020 that can help inspire you.

  1. Water Cremations – As more and more states are making water cremations legal; they are quickly becoming very popular. Unlike traditional, flame-based cremations, water cremations are much better for the environment. They also simulate standard body decay processes for a more “natural” disposition. Not to mention that the cremated remains from a water cremation are much lighter and less likely to be mixed with harmful pollutants than those from a standard cremation as the remains were not burned at extreme temperatures or exposed to chemicals and gases.
  2. Scattering Parties – Scattering parties are the answer to what to do with the deceased cremated remains. Rather than a private ceremony, the new trend is to have a scattering party or event tied to releasing the ashes. As people are starting to leave detailed cremation instructions and release requests, it’s even easier to plan an event that matches your lost loved one’s interests and spirit. Scattering events have taken a life of their own, from sails and hikes to everything in between. They are a wonderful way to celebrate the lost loved one in a unique way as you put them to rest.
  3. Painted Ash Art – You can also use cremated remains in paint for art pieces. Remains are mixed with special paint that can then be used to produce a portrait of the deceased, or another special image. Cremated ashes have also been used in sculpting materials to create unique vases and home items that can be given to family members of the deceased. It’s important to note, though, that you have to find a qualified and experienced artist that is comfortable with working with cremated ashes and knows how to treat this material with respect. These cremation art pieces are always unique and can be treasured for generations to come.
  4. Cremation Jewels – Everyone knows you can turn your loved one’s ashes into jewelry, but not everyone knows you can turn them into actual jewels. Thanks to major technological advancements, you can quickly turn your loved one into a precious stone for a pretty fair price. You can send the deceased’s ashes to have them be pressed into a diamond that can then be set into jewelry or turned into a priceless family heirloom. Every diamond made from cremated remains is just as unique and precious as the person it came from.

These are just a few of the many ways that you can make a memorable and honorable service for your lost military member.

cremation services in Clarksville, TN

If you’re interested in any of these military cremation trends or want to learn more about Clarksville, TN cremation services, Sykes Funeral Home & Crematory is here to help. Call or visit us today for more information.

funeral homes in Clarksville, TN

Funeral Services for Pets

Losing a pet is never easy. But, just like how memorials and funerals can make the loss of a loved one a bit easier, funeral and cremation services for pets can help ease the pain of that loss, too. There are many funeral homes in Clarksville, TN that offer various types of funeral and cremation services for pets. Losing a pet is painful, but a funeral or memorial service and help ease the pain.

Planning pet funerals and cremations starts with deciding how you want to send your friend to his final resting place. Pet cremation is one great way to memorialize your pet. You can scatter the ashes somewhere special after the cremation or keep them in a pet cremation urn.

Pet burials are another common and more traditional option. You can bury your pet in the comfort of your own yard, or in a special cemetery dedicated to pet burial. You can also plan a pet funeral or memorial service to go along with the body disposition. You can hold the service at your home, where you plan to scatter the ashes, in a funeral home, or in the pet cemetery. Be sure to choose a location that allows you to express your grief in a healthy way and sets you up to properly begin the healing process. Also, be sure to get any necessary permissions or permits before you host a ceremony in a public space, especially if you plan to bury the pet or scatter the ashes.

Just like a traditional service for a deceased person, a pet funeral or memorial is an honorable way to memorialize your pet’s life and say goodbye in a constructive way. There are many different ways you can celebrate your pet in a memorial. For example, you can invite friends and family members who were a part of your pet’s life or understand how important he was to you.

Gather around the grave or ashes and share pet memories or stories. You may also choose to play music, read poems or share feelings. You can ask attendants to help eulogize, say prayers, or just talk about how your lost pet made them feel. Bring along special stationary, cards or paper on which people can write down their feelings or thoughts. This way you can hold onto these ideas and memories to go through later on when you miss your pet.

Just like traditional funeral services, most pet funeral and memorial services can benefit from some sort of visual representation of the deceased. You can craft a small tribute or viewing in the memory of your pet by decorating a table with memories of your lost pet like tags, collars, favorite toys or photos. If you chose to cremate the body, you may also choose to display the urn for the viewing.

funeral homes in Clarksville, TN

Sykes Funeral Home & Crematory is here to help if you want to learn more about pet funeral or cremation services, or have questions about Clarksville, TN funeral homes in general.

cremation services in Clarksville, TN

Outdoor Urns for Veterans

You aren’t limited to displaying or housing the remains of your lost veteran in an indoor urn after cremation services in Clarksville, TN. In fact, there are hundreds of options when it comes to veteran body disposition post cremation. From scattering and water burials, to inurnment in a columbarium and more, you can get as creative as you want for your loved one’s post-cremation final resting place.

One option is burial, inurnment or display outdoors. You can easily house your lost veteran’s cremated remains in an urn above or below ground outside and still honor his or her service to our country.

If you decide to go this route, however, you do need to choose an urn that specifically made for outdoor use. These outdoor urns are designed to remain intact and even beautiful even after long years of outdoor exposure to dirt, dust, rain, snow and more. When shopping for an outdoor urn, you first need to decide if the urn will stay above ground, or be buried below ground, as there are both above and below ground urns.

  • Above Ground Outdoor Urns – Many cemeteries have a columbarium. Columbarium are spaces, rooms or buildings designed to hold and display cremation urns. They have numerous individual niches carved into the walls for this purpose. If you’re planning on inurning your loved one’s cremated remains outdoors but above ground, it will most likely be in a columbarium. When choosing an above ground outdoor urn, a metal urn is best. Bronze, brass, pewter, and stainless steel are great choices, although almost any urn designed for human remains will most likely work. However, it’s important to keep in mind that unless the outer wall of the columbarium is made of glass, you probably won’t be able see the urn once it’s been placed. Therefore, you don’t have to worry about decoration too much. You can choose ceramic or glass, but these urns are not ideal for outdoor use as they are more vulnerable to cracking.
  • Below Ground Outdoor Urns – You can also choose to bury your loved one’s cremated remains. Like traditional full body burial, burying cremated remains allows you to have a defined place where family and friends can go to remember the lost loved one. In some cases, many families already own a burial plot, and want to use this land even if the deceased is cremated. Most cemeteries require an urn vault when burying cremated remains. The vault is typically sealed to keep out moisture and other elements of nature. Since the vault will bear the brunt of the natural exposure, any kind of urn will do. If you don’t have to have an urn vault, you need to choose an urn that is durable. Strong urns from metal, composites or resins are ideal. A cremation urn made from wood, ceramic, or glass would most likely to lose its integrity over time, leaving the deceased’s remains exposed.

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These are just a few of the ways you can put a veteran’s remains to rest after a cremation service. If you want to learn more about outdoor cremation urns and Clarksville, TN cremation services, just get in touch with Sykes Funeral Home & Crematory.

funeral homes in Clarksville, TN

All About Water Cremations

Many funeral homes in Clarksville, TN offer cremations as well as funeral services. Cremations have been popular for a very long time but have been even more so in recent years for many reasons including price, ease, flexibility, and environmental benefits. However, there is a new kind of cremation on the market that may offer all those benefits and more: water cremation.

Water cremation, or alkaline hydrolysis, puts an interesting and unique spin on traditional cremation procedures, and might even be better for the environment as it simulates a more natural tissue and bone decay process than traditional flame-based methods. Water cremations do not involve any burning, so no harmful gases or pollutants are released into the air. Rather, during a water cremation, the body is placed in a steel chamber. The chamber is then filled with an alkaline solution made up of 95% water and 5% potassium hydroxide and raised to a very high pressure to prevent boiling. The chamber, and the body in the solution, is then heated to around 350 degrees Fahrenheit for an extended period of time, from 4 to 16 hours.

The heat, pressure and solution work together to break down the body, leaving only the bones. At the beginning of the process, the mixture is strongly basic, with a pH level of approximately 14. However, by the end of the process, the pH can drop 11. The body slowly dissolves, and the bones, once removed from the chamber, crushed into ash and returned to the family just like in a traditional cremation. However, water cremated remains are much lighter in color and in texture than classic cremated remains. Cremated remains made from flames are often darker and denser from the various combustion reactions that occur when the body is heated under extreme temperatures.

While water cremation may seem strange, it’s actually just a more sped up version of what would happen when a body decays naturally. Interestingly, the process was originally developed as a way to process animal carcasses into plant food back in 1888. In 2007, a biochemist from Scotland founded a company to make the machines necessary to use the method to process human remains. 2007 wasn’t that long ago, so water cremations are still pretty new. The method is so new, in fact, that it’s currently only legal as a means of final disposition in 16 states, including Oregon, Illinois, Colorado, Nevada, California, and more. Laws on water cremation are currently pending in states like New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania.

Would you consider a water cremation for yourself or for a lost loved one? Whether or not you would, you can still turn to Sykes Funeral Home & Crematory for your cremation and funeral service needs.

funeral homes in Clarksville, TN

Sykes Funeral Home & Crematory is a Clarksville, TN funeral home that offers a wide range of experienced and compassionate funeral and cremation services. Please give us call today to learn more about what we can do for you in your time of loss and grief.

cremation service in Clarksville, TN

Your Options for After a Cremation Service

If you choose to go with cremation service in Clarksville, TN, you have even more choices coming your way as there are quite a few options when it comes to cremated remains.

The most common and traditional way to inter cremated remains is by scattering. The options for scattering are almost limitless, but there are some widespread choices such as casting. Casting ashes simply means tossing the cremated remains on the wind, usually in a special location. Be sure to check the wind direction to avoid uncomfortable moments. There is also raking. Raking ashes happens when a family member or loved one by pours the ashes over loose soil and rakes them to combine the two. Local ordinances and laws generally prevent raking at any old spot, so make sure to check with the authorities before raking in a public garden or park.

You can also scatter ashes into any body of water, again with permission from the local authorities. Another version of water scattering is to sink a water-soluble urn into the lake, river or ocean. Last but not least is ringing. Ringing involves more of a ceremony than other post-cremation choices. It involves forming a ring around an object like a house, tree or other special thing with the ashes, almost to compound the idea that the deceased is always with you and protecting you.

Just because you chose a cremation service doesn’t mean you can’t also have a burial. In fact, many people have both as you can easily bury or entomb cremated remains. This option helps you stay more on track with traditional burials and funerals while also using cremation services. There are a few options for burial or entombment after cremation including:

  • Family Plot: The most traditional burial for cremation remains is in the family plot or cemetery. Burial in the family plot is an easy way to use cremation services while still enjoying classic burial and funeral traditions.
  • Columbarium: Columbarium are spaces specifically dedicated to housing and interring cremated remains Most often found in churches, there are also a few freestanding columbarium options as well as those attached to cemeteries.
  • Crypt or Mausoleum: Go more religious or familial with a crypt or mausoleum. These options are usually preferred by Roman Catholics but can get pretty expensive.
  • Memorial Object: A non-traditional burial method for cremated remains is in a special memorial object like a bench, grave marker, rock or even in a tree. This method and special objects help loved ones memorialize and celebrate their lost in more personalized ways.

cremation service in Clarksville, TN

Whether you’re planning for your eventual passing or dealing with the recent death of a loved one, body disposition is a big choice. Get in touch with Sykes Funeral Home & Crematory to learn more about your options for after cremation service. No matter what you choose, we are here to help you with all your Clarksville, TN cremation needs. Please stop by and visit us or give us a call today.

funeral home in Clarksville, TN

Writing A Eulogy

It may seem like an impossible task to write a eulogy for someone you know and love after they’ve passed away. Whether you’re speaking at a memorial service, or at a funeral in a funeral home in Clarksville, TN, you can use these tips to help make your eulogy writing easier.

  • Keep it Personal – Focus on the good and positive things in the deceased’s life, and don’t be afraid to add a bit of mild humor to keep things light. Most importantly, don’t be afraid to add a few personal stories or memories.
  • Be Prepared – Write your eulogy before the service. That way, everything you are going to say is planned out, so you don’t have to worry in the moment. Print it out on a paper so you’re not messing with a phone or tablet.
  • Stay Positive – Although cremations and memorials are somber, you should still remain focused on the person’s life and not their death. Avoid talking about negative moments or things that might cast a poor light on him or her, as the purpose of the eulogy is to honor the deceased.
  • Add a Bio – While you can structure the eulogy with stories and moments, it’s easier to frame it as a short biography. Include details like place of birth, marriage, children and other big milestones to keep the story linear and easy to follow. Though these details may seem trivial, they are an important part of every eulogy.
  • Details – Don’t forget to add details like your name and your relationship to the deceased. You should also be sure to thank everyone for coming and mention why everyone is gathered.
  • Keep it Brief – Although it seems tough to cram a whole life into a few minutes, the eulogy should not be longer than 5 minutes. Focus on the main parts of the deceased’s life and be sure to write your speech down so you don’t stray off topic.
  • Delivery is Key – You don’t have to be a professional actor or public speaker but be aware of your delivery. Try to use a light conversational tone and look up from the paper every few sentences to connect with the rest of the people at the service.
  • End High – End your eulogy on a good note, like a fond memory or the impact the deceased had on your life. You can also finish by saying a final goodbye or mentioning that this is exactly the way the person would want things to be. You never want to leave the funeral attendees feeling more upset than when they arrived.

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Use these tips to make sure you’re as prepared as possible to honor your lost loved one through the eulogy. Giving a eulogy doesn’t have to be stressful if you are prepared. If you want more tips on eulogies, or want to learn more about Clarksville, TN funeral homes, just get in touch with Sykes Funeral Home & Crematory. We are happy to help in your time of loss.

cremation services in Clarksville, TN

Veteran Memorial Tips for After Cremation Services

Choosing a cremation service in Clarksville, TN might seem impersonal or clinical at first. But, in reality, cremations give you a lot of leeways to plan a unique, meaningful, and respectful memorial or service for your lost loved one and veteran.

In fact, cremations make it simple to make sure your deceased loved one’s memorial service is unique to him or her, especially if your lost loved one was a veteran. Memorial services are for both the living and the dead, as they help honor the deceased while providing a healthy and constructive place for the living to grieve. An ideal service helps you and your loved ones mourn the loss while bringing together those that cared for the deceased so that everyone can pay tribute in a positive way.

As it can be overwhelming to plan a memorial service for after a cremation, especially when you’re grieving the loss of a brave veteran, you can use these tips to help you plan a memorial service for your lost loved one after a cremation service:

  • Date and Time – One nice thing about cremation services, as opposed to burials and funerals, is that you don’t have a deadline or a specific timeline. With a burial, you need to have the funeral service within a few days of death because of decomposition. With a cremation service, however, you have as much time as you want since the body is already broken down. You can easily plan memorial services at later dates to allow people to come from out of town or to have it be on an important or meaningful day.

funeral homes in Clarksville, TN

  • Honor the Veteran – Once you’ve chosen a day, you can start planning the specifics. There are practically zero restrictions on what services should or need to be, so feel free to get creative. Think about the deceased and what he liked, stood for, or is most remembered for and expand on that. Have a theme party, make video tributes, scatter ashes in a ceremony, or even do things the deceased liked to do. This is especially true if the deceased was a veteran. Decorate the service with the veteran’s ribbons, metals, or photos from his time in the service. Have a military service with a bugle or flag folding ceremony. The sky is really the limit!
  • Ask for Help – While planning memorial services can be bittersweet or even exciting, they also happen during a time of loss and can bring up stressful feelings. You might need help with the planning, and that’s alright. Ask for help from other family members or loved ones or hire professionals. Find a funeral home nearby that has experience with memorial services to help you plan your event with compassion and attention.

The sky’s the limit when it comes to planning memorials for veterans for after cremation services. If you want more inspiration or guidance for a memorial service or want to learn more about your options for Clarksville, TN cremation services, just get in touch with Sykes Funeral Home & Crematory.

funeral homes in Clarksville, TN

Six Things You Might Not Know About Funeral Homes

Most people don’t think about funerals and funeral homes in Clarksville, TN until it’s time to plan or visit one. This is understandable, but it’s not helpful when you’re suddenly facing a loss and have to plan a funeral. Use this list of six unknown funeral home facts to help you be better prepared.

  1. Military Funeral Services – Military funeral service honors are given to members of the United States Armed Forces that consist of the Marines, Army, National Guard, Air Force, Navy, and Coast Guard. The individual must also meet one or more the following requirements: died in active duty or Selective Reserve, completed at least one term of enlistment or initial obligated service in the Selective Reserve, and were not dishonorably discharged, or served on active duty, or in the Selected Reserve, and were not dishonorably discharged.
  2. You Cannot Authorize Your Own Funeral – While you can preplan and prepay for your funeral, you cannot sign the final authorization for your own burial or cremation because of the Right to Control law. This law, except in situations where a funeral agent is designated, outlines a specific family hierarchy that shows who has the right to authorize the funeral of a recently deceased person.
  3. Headstones for Military Services – The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) can also furnish a headstone at no cost. These veteran’s headstones are available for any veteran regardless of the date of death. The headstones are available in bronze, marble, and granite in various styles to match existing headstones in the place of burial. This same service is available for cremated remains in the form of niche markers for the columbarium. While the headstone itself is free of charge, the family is in charge of all installation fees.

Clarksville, TN cremation services

  1. Coffins and Caskets Are Two Different Things – Coffins and caskets are different things. Coffins have six sides and are shaped like a hexagon to go along with the lines of a human body, meaning tapered at the head and foot with a wider construction at the shoulder. A casket, on the other hand, is rectangular with four sides adjoined at right angles.
  2. Embalming is Optional – Embalming is not always required by law. You can choose to skip embalming or be embalmed with eco-friendly preservatives. You always have the right to choose a body disposition method that does not require embalming if you don’t want to be embalmed. However, some funeral homes may require embalming depending on public viewings of the body and similar services.
  3. You Can Compare Prices – Prices actually vary from one funeral home to another, and you have the right to call and ask what prices are in order to compare. Funeral homes must provide you with a General Price List that outlines their prices when asked as per California state law. Always do your research to make sure you’re getting a good deal, and don’t be afraid to ask for a price list as per your rights.

These are only six out of many unknown funeral facts. Want to learn more about Clarksville, TN funeral homes, and military funeral services? Just get in touch with Sykes Funeral Home & Crematory today.

cremation services in Clarksville, TN

Celebrants and Military Services

Celebrants are becoming more and more popular for memorials after cremation services in Clarksville, TN. But what is a celebrant? And what can one do for you or your loved one’s service, especially if your loved one was in the military?

A celebrant is a qualified Master of Ceremonies that helps to officiate funeral and memorial services by planning, overseeing, and carrying out the proceedings. They can host both religious and non-religious funerals. They are called celebrants because most people aim for the funeral service to be a celebration of the deceased’s life. This celebratory approach puts more emphasis on a life well-lived, unique traits, and special memories rather than grief and loss. A celebrant can help you craft unique services with substance, personalization, and meaning.

Celebrants can be very helpful when planning a service for a military member. Serving in the military is a life-changing and selfless commitment, and a celebrant can help honor that commitment through a memorial or funeral service. Celebrants usually work with a representative from the deceased’s branch of the armed forces to make sure that the ceremony or service is an accurate representation of the brand and the appropriate military honors are used. A celebrant can also officiate the military service ceremony at the memorial or funeral as the bereaved wish.

You should hire a celebrant if you want someone to take charge of hosting and speaking during the funeral. Celebrants are more flexible and open to new things that traditional funeral hosts like ministers or priests, so you can add more customization to the service. A celebrant can also help you come up with ideas for this customization. This help can be very meaningful during a difficult time of loss.

While most funeral homes and cremation providers can recommend a celebrant, it’s a good idea to also do some research on your own. Make a list of possibilities, do some Googling, then call each one to get your questions answered. If you need more information, feel free to meet with your options in person to get a better feel for what they can bring to the table. During your first meeting with a potential celebrant, explain what kind of funeral you want, and how much you’d like him to be involved in the proceedings. Remember, your funeral celebrant is there to help you, and should, therefore, be willing to work with you to develop the funeral services you want. Don’t be afraid to ask questions, as the right celebrant will be more than willing to help out in any way he can.

Clarksville, TN cremation services

Hiring a celebrant is an out-of-the-box way to make sure your loved one’s funeral or service is unique, celebratory, and respectful, especially when it comes to military honors. Sykes Funeral Home & Crematory offers a range of Clarksville, TN cremation services and can best advise you on how to proceed with a military service with or without a celebrant. Call or visit us today to learn more about what we can do for you in your time of loss.

funeral home in Clarksville, TN

Obituary Basics for Veterans

From choosing a funeral home in Clarksville, TN to picking out flowers, there’s a lot to accomplish when you lose a loved one. This to-do list includes writing an obituary, especially if your lost loved one was a veteran of our nation’s armed services.

Obituaries are a traditional way to let family and friends celebrate the life of the deceased in a public way and announce the death in a compassionate manner. They are also important for veterans to show the community how the brave soldier gave of him or herself to our country. To be better prepared to write an obituary for your lost loved one, here are the common parts of obituaries:

Announcement of Death – Obituaries usually start with basic information such as the name, age, and place of residence of the deceased. This is followed by the death announcement, including the time and place of death. Most people choose to use a softer word or term that “death,” such as “passed away”, “died”, “went to be with the Lord” etc. Many people are unsure whether or not to list the cause of death in the obituary. At the end of the day, the cause of death is only the family’s business and does not need to be shared unless the immediate family chooses. However, if the death was sudden and unexpected, listing the cause of death in the public obituary might field questions and repetitions at the funeral.

Biographical Sketch – The keyword in this portion is “sketch.” Many people are tempted to write a full account of the deceased’s life. While some people may find that interesting or helpful, the obituary is only meant to detail the most important aspects of his life. Some key pieces to include are the date and place of birth, parent’s names including mother’s maiden name, date, and place of marriage, birth name of spouse, education, work, and military service. Feel free to list events chronologically, or to take a more creative approach.

Veteran Information – Be sure to include the details of your veteran’s service. Where did she or she serve? With which part of the armed forces? Are there any stories of his or her bravery or commitment to the country?

Family – As the saying goes, the funeral is for the living. The same can be said for the obituary, so a key element is listing the surviving family members and loved ones. Take care to not forget anyone, but don’t feel the need to list every single member of the extended family.

Service Times – While tradition varies on this element, most obituaries include funeral information so people can attend if they choose. List the essentials: time, full date and place of service along with the name of the officiate; time, full date and place of burial or interment if applicable; and finally, time, full date and place of visitation.

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If you have more questions about obituaries or other aspects of service at a Clarksville, TN funeral home, just reach out to Sykes Funeral Home & Crematory. Please stop by and visit us or give us a call today.