Category Archives: Cremation Services

cremation services in Clarksville, TN

Cremation Container Laws

As required by law, during all cremation services in Clarksville, TN, the body is placed inside a cremation container before being put inside the cremation chamber. Cremation containers can vary from simple cardboard boxes to more traditional caskets.

These fully combustible containers are large and sturdy enough to hold the body during transportation to the chamber and during the cremation itself. There are a few different kinds of cremation containers, each with different intentions and needs. The main thing that they all have in common is that they are fully combustible, meaning they don’t have any parts that won’t melt or break down under extreme heat like decorations or metal handles.

The kind of container that is chose depends on a few key factors including the family’s wishes, the size of the person, whether or not there will be a viewing with the body present, local laws, the crematory’s standards and, of course, budget. The most common kind of cremation container is a rigid cardboard box that is large enough to hold an average body.

The purpose of the container is to provide a dignified means of storing the body prior to cremation and to literally contain the body while it is being prepared for cremation and when entering the retort. These common containers are simple and unadorned, making them budget friendly for those looking for an inexpensive option. Families can also choose to rent caskets for the funeral service and then use a common cremation container for the cremation itself.

This is a good way to save money while also honoring the deceased with a more decorated casket. Rental caskets are kept sanitary with removable linings, shells and overlays that are used to hold the body in the rental as well as the cremation container. There are a few other kinds of cremation containers and caskets such as green caskets that are made from natural materials or Jewish caskets, called arons, that are specially made for Jewish funerals.

Also, in some instances, the family wishes to spend a bit more money on a decorated cremation casket. This usually happens when there is going to be a viewing or service with the body present before the cremation. These cremation caskets are decorated with combustible or removable hardware and are often made from wood and natural materials like bamboo or wicker. Or, in some cases, the common cremation container isn’t an option, such as when the body is larger than average and requires a sturdier box.

cremation services in Clarksville, TN

With so many choices, how do you choose the right container for your lost loved one? The first step is being informed and knowing your options, and then you should take the deceased’s wishes into account, as well as what kind of cremation and service you are going to have. Remember, though, at the end of the day there is no wrong choice as it only matters that you choose what’s right for you and the deceased.

Sykes Funeral Home & Crematory help you with any and all of your Clarksville, TN cremation service needs or questions. Please stop by and visit us or give us a call today.

cremation services in Clarksville, TN

How Bodies are Identified During Cremation Services

Many people hear false horror stories of families being returned the wrong cremains, or just being given bags of wood ash or even of sand. These rumors lead to a lot of concern over the cremation identification process. That’s why one of the main concerns the bereaved have with cremation services in Clarksville, TN is how their loved one’s remains will be identified throughout the cremation process.

These concerns are understandable, as it is a very sensitive subject with a lot of tension. However, there is no reason for these concerns as all licensed cremation providers have thorough and effective identification procedures in place to ensure accuracy and dignity. Most licensed cremation providers are more than happy to walk clients through their individual identification process.

The majority of crematories are obligated by law to carry out two different identification processes to ensure the deceased are correctly identified based on the name provided by the authorized agent or the bereaved. First, the deceased’s name, as provided by the bereaved or authorized agent, will be clearly listed on the cremation container. Second, a metal bracelet, disk or other token will be placed in the container with the deceased. This metal tag will not be broken down during the cremation process and will remain with the cremated ashes to further ensure identification.

Don’t be ashamed to ask for additional details, as most cremation businesses understand these concerns and are happy to help alleviate them. It’s important for you to be 100% comfortable with your provider and their practices. It can be difficult to ask questions surrounding such delicate and potentially painful topics. If you’re unsure of what to ask surrounding identification during the cremation process, try these questions such as

  • “How are the deceased identified?”
  • “How does this process change if I am not there when he or she passes?”
  • “How can I be sure my loved one is the one you are cremating?”
  • “How can I be sure of this if I choose a cremation without a viewing?”
  • “In what ways do you certify that the ashes I am returned are those of my loved one?”

If the cremation provider is unable or unwilling to answer questions such as these, consider taking your business elsewhere. It’s vital that you feel comfortable with the cremation process.

cremation services in Clarksville, TN

You can always ask for additional identification steps. For example, you can ask for a detailed explanation of the cremation process in writing, have the cremation provider do a comparison of the deceased to a current photo of your loved one before the cremation begins, ask the cremation provider to do a final identification check based on a listed unique detail like a tattoo or birth mark.

Sykes Funeral Home & Crematory is here to help if you would like to learn more about the body identification process during cremation or Clarksville, TN cremation services. Stop and visit us or give us a call today for more information on what we can do for you in your time of loss.

cremation service in Clarksville, TN

Spreading Ashes After Veteran’s Cremation Services

Many people choose to spread their loved one’s cremated remains, or ashes, after a cremation service in Clarksville, TN. While burying the ashes or inurning them are popular, scattering or spreading ashes is even more so. This is especially true when it comes to spreading veteran’s ashes.

Did you know there are many different ways to spread ashes after veteran’s services? Take these as examples:

  • Fireworks – Spreading ashes is usually a somber experience, but why not make it more fun and celebratory with fireworks? Firework companies make fireworks using the cremated remains to have the deceased be a part of a spectacular light show in the sky.
  • Plant a Tree – Tree urns turn cremated remains into fertilizer for new trees, giving your lost loved one new life through loss. You can plant the tree anywhere you want from a backyard to a special park. The tree will always be there as a place you can visit when you miss the deceased or want to reflect on their life.
  • Aerial Scattering – People also scatter ashes into the air by climbing up a mountain or hill, going to the edge of a cliff, or using the wind in an open plain or meadow. You can also hire a specialized plane to scatter the ashes from way up in the air.
  • Skydiving Scattering – If the deceased was adventurous or free-spirited what better way to scatter his or her ashes than while skydiving? This unconventional ash spreading method helps you literally and figuratively let go of your lost loved one.
  • Space Launch – Whether your loved one always wanted to be an astronaut, loved stars and space, or you just want to give him or her a very special send off, you can launch the ashes into space. There are a few specialized businesses that launch ashes into space for a significant fee. The ashes will orbit the earth for a few months and then vaporize when the re-enter the atmosphere.
  • Raking – Raking is similar to trenching, but instead of digging a small hole in which the ashes are covered the ashes are raking into the soil with a tool like a rake or shovel. Many people choose to rake ashes into a significant place like the yard of a home or a special park.
  • Water Scattering – Water has almost always had a connection with spirituality and religion, making it a very popular choice for scattering ashes. Scatter ashes directly into the water or release them in a water-safe biodegradable urn.
  • Trenching – Trenching is when the bereaved dig a shallow pit in which to deposit and lightly bury the ashes. This way, the ashes aren’t technically buried but they are contained to a specific spot so they can be visited or honored.

cremation service in Clarksville, TN

Sykes Funeral Home & Crematory is here to help if you want to learn more about Clarksville, TN cremation services or veteran’s services. You can stop by and visit us or give us a call at for more information on what we can do for you in your time of loss.

cremation services in Clarksville, TN

Columbarium and Mausoleums

How do columbarium and mausoleums come into play when it comes to cremation services in Clarksville, TN? Many people choose to inter the cremated remains in the ground or in a permanent above ground resting place, but which building do they use?

If you’ve ever been walking in, through or past a cemetery, you’ve most likely noticed the ornate but small buildings scattered around the grounds amidst the tombstones. These buildings are mausoleums, columbarium, or even a combination of the two. Both columbarium and mausoleums are defined as permanent, above ground resting places for human remains, but they have a few key differences between them. Unlike mausoleums that generally hold bodies, columbarium are designed to house cremated remains.

According to the National Funeral Directors Association, a mausoleum is defined as, “a building designed for above-ground placement of a casket. The casket is placed into a crypt that may be designed for one or two persons.” Mausoleums can have one crypt, or a chamber designed to hold one body, or a larger space made to hold a few people like a family or a couple. Some mausoleums have more than one room for different parts of a family. These buildings are often decorated with exterior markers to denote who is resting inside. Some even have glass windows that allow those on the outside to view the coffins.

Mausoleums can be found in different variations and designs all around the world. One of the original Seven Wonders of the World was a mausoleum! Built in 353 BC near what is now known as Turkey, The Mausoleum of Halicarnassus was the final resting place of a famous Persian king named Mausolus. This king was so rich that he commissioned one of the finest mausoleums ever built and is actually how the term mausoleum was coined.

The term columbarium comes from the Latin word “Columba” which means dove. In the past, doves and pigeons were housed in buildings with niches on the walls for their nests. This design is very similar to how columbarium are made, as they have compartments built into the walls to house and display cremation urns.

cremation services in Clarksville, TN

There are lots of different columbarium designs. Some are indoor and some are outside, while others are simple and more still are decorated and elaborate. There are some with clear class niches to display the urns, while others are made of thick stone to hide the cremains inside. You can choose whatever kind of columbarium you like for your lost loved one, or you can look to the deceased’s list of post-humous wishes to learn about what he or she wanted done with the cremains.

Sykes Funeral Home & Crematory is here to help if you want to learn more about your options for after a Clarksville, TN cremation service. You can visit us or give us a call to learn more about what we can do for you in your time of loss, or for more information about your cremation options.

cremation service in Clarksville, TN

Unique Cremation Urns for After Military Services

If you are considering keeping your lost loved one’s cremated remains in a cremation urn after a cremation service in Clarksville, TN, you have to choose what kind of urn you want to use. There are plenty of classic urns to choose from and there are also more unique options that can help your loved one be remembered in a special way – especially if your lost loved one serviced in the military.

These are inspiring and creative ideas to get you started:

  1. Plant Pot – You can easily add ashes to an existing planter to act as fertilizer for any kind of plant, be it a young tree, bush or flower. Mix the ashes in with the soil and as the plant grows it will draw nutrients from the ashes to grow big and beautiful.
  2. Hollowed Books – Hollowed out books aren’t just for hiding secrets or stolen money like in the movies. You can order a custom-made false book or hollow out the deceased’s favorite yourself using a knife and a bit of elbow-grease. Place the ashes inside in a bag and seal the book with glue.
  3. Wind Chimes – Think of your lost loved one every time the wind blows. Order a custom wind chime urn online and hang it on a porch, in a yard, or in a window. You can even choose what kind of chime you want, like an alto or soprano.
  4. Memorial Jewelry – It can be very comforting after a losing a loved one to keep the ashes close. Memorial jewelry allows you to do just that. Create any kind of jewelry piece from a pendant to a ring with the ashes. The pieces can be made from stainless steel, platinum, bronze, or many other kinds of metals.
  5. Holiday Ornaments – A holiday ornament urn is basically just a mini urn that can hang on a Christmas tree. The ornament is too small to hold all the cremated remains, so it’s a good opportunity to make several ornaments for all the family to have.
  6. Stuffed Animals – Stuffed animal urns are most commonly made for children that have passed away. The stuffed animal is cut in a small opening, the bagged ashes are placed inside, and the animal is resewn.
  7. Beer Growler – Perfect for deceased beer lovers, beer growler urns can be custom ordered from most craft breweries. In some instances, you can order a growler with the label listing the deceased’s name.
  8. Musical Instruments – You can choose almost any kind of instrument, carve out a hollow, and seal some of the cremated remains inside. Brass instruments, guitars and basses are best suited.
  9. Tackle Box – If the deceased loved fishing, commemorate him or her in a sealed tackle box. Be sure to keep it in a safe place, but don’t forget to bring it out on the water with you the next time you go.

cremation service in Clarksville, TN

These are just a few of your many choices for after a Clarksville, TN cremation service. If you want more ideas or information, please reach out to Sykes Funeral Home & Crematory. We’re happy to do whatever we can to help you plan your lost loved one’s military service.

cremation services in Clarksville, TN

Is There a Difference Between Cremation Service and Funeral Professionals?

Whether you’re looking into cremation services in Clarksville, TN or wanting to learn more about funerals and funeral homes in general, it’s important to know the differences between the different titles for these industry professionals as to not offend and be sure to give these hardworking individuals the respect they’ve earned.

You’ve probably heard the terms undertaker, mortician, embalmer, and funeral director, but do you really know what they all mean?

To begin, you probably shouldn’t use the titles undertaker and mortician as they are out of date and a little negative. They are pretty much synonymous with the title of funeral director even though the term funeral director really didn’t start taking hold until the early 1900s when industry professionals actively set out to change their name from undertaker to something new. Funeral Director is the most modern, and correct, term for a professional in the industry. A funeral director is a funeral or cremation professional that helps arrange, plan and coordinate a funeral or cremation services.

Funeral directors are professionals that are hardworking, thoroughly trained, and committed and help with funeral and cremation services. Funeral directors have to be licensed according to local laws. This is especially true in states where the funeral director is legally responsible for making sure the crematory or funeral home is complying with all health, mortuary, and vital statistic laws of the area. They perform a lot of services from funerals and visitations to memorials and wakes, as well as helping prepare the body for a funeral or cremation, including placing the body in the casket or cremation container.

On the other hand, an embalmer is a cremation and funeral professional that is responsible for making sure the body is ready for burial. As the name denotes, embalmers perform the act of embalming, meaning they remove all body fluids and replace them with embalming liquid to slow down the body’s decomposition for a funeral service. In most states funeral directors and embalmers require different licenses and training courses. However, it is common for some people to be both depending on their professional interests, their business models, or local ordinances.

cremation services in Clarksville, TN

Funeral director is the preferred title as it is the most modern and gives the respect due for these hardworking professionals, even though none of the terms are technically incorrect. The next time you’re in a funeral home for a cremation service or are making plans for a loved one’s recent passing, you will know what to call the industry professional that is helping you.

Sykes Funeral Home & Crematory is here to help if you have more questions on industry terms and names or would like to learn more about your options for Clarksville, TN cremation services. We offer a range of services and are happy to do whatever we can. Please stop by and visit us or give us a call to learn more about what we can do for you in your time of loss.

cremation service in Clarksville, TN

How Will You Customize a Veteran Service?

Whether you’re planning a memorial veteran service at a unique location or hosting a wake after a cremation service in Clarksville, TN, it’s important that the service is personalized to the deceased.

Studies show that the more personalized and memorable a service is the more it helps not only honor the deceased but also offer some relief for the bereaved during their time of loss – especially when it comes to veteran’s services.

How will you customize the cremation service? If you don’t know, don’t worry. There are a lot of different ways to go about it. The following list of ideas, for example, is a great place to start:

  1. Set Up a Memory Table – A memory table is an easy way to help make a memorial service custom and personalized. It’s a simple and free way to show items that either meant a lot to the deceased, show their personality, or represent the deceased to other people. You can put almost anything on a memory table such as photos, sunglasses, ticket stubs from special events, letters, favorite vases or flowers, beloved clothing, or anything else that was special to or about the deceased. You can also make several memory stations as opposed to just one table. There can be themed tables with each one showing a part of the deceased’s life, such as wedding memories, school items, and children and grandchildren.
  2. Put Out Special Food – Food is a serious comfort for a lot of people. Take inspiration from the deceased’s favorite foods and put out a special spread for guests at the service.
  3. Add Decorations – It might seem like bad form to decorate a memorial service after a cremation, but decorations can actually make the service more special and unique. You can add decorations in any form you want, from lamps and rugs to artwork, flowers and everything in between. Bring decorations that somehow represent or honor the deceased. For example, if she loved to stitch, you could hang some of her work. Or if he loved a certain artist you could display copies of famous artwork.
  4. Share Photos and Videos – Many bereaved families make photo collages or montage videos for a memorial service. These items are treasured by the family, but other bereaved like friends and coworkers would appreciate access to them as well. Consider uploading any montages or videos online to share with other people. You can use GoogleDrive, DropBox, or Youtube. Make the files accessible with only a certain link and print the link on the service program so guests can access it if they choose.

cremation service in Clarksville, TN

If you need more ideas, look to the deceased for inspiration from his or her life, or turn to Sykes Funeral Home & Crematory. We have years of experience in the Clarksville, TN cremation services industry, and are happy to help you in any way that we can. Please stop by and visit us or give us a call to learn more about what we can do for you in your time of loss.

cremation services in Clarksville, TN

Common Religions and Cremation Services

The religion/cremation debate is not a new one, as some belief systems have been encouraging or discouraging cremation for centuries. For many, the choice between burial and cremation is a religious one, as some religions accept cremation, while others do not. There are tons of cremation services in Clarksville, TN happening all the time, just as there are tons of different religions co-existing in the area at the same time.

Since there are so many belief systems in Clarksville, TN, here is a short list of what some common religions say about cremation:

  1. Christianity – Cremation is fully accepted in Christianity. There are even verses in the Bible that seem to encourage the practice. Take, for example, Genesis 3:19, “By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food until you return to the ground, since from it you were taken; for dust you are and to dust you will return.” However, there are some Christians that cite biblical examples in support of traditional burial, such as Christ being buried, or various Old Testament burials. All in all, when it comes to Christianity and burial, it really depends on what the individual prefers.
  2. Judaism – The Jewish faith does not allow cremations, as per scripture in the Torah. However, some more modern Jewish families do choose cremation if it coincides with their personal beliefs.
  3. Hinduism – The Hindu religion pretty much mandates cremation. Hindus believe that fire is a purifying agent that can help release the deceased’s spirit from its physical body so it can move on to a spiritual dimension. Hinduism also calls for a memorial service after the cremation to keep memories of the deceased alive.
  4. Spiritism – Spiritism, or Reincarnation, is a kind of belief system that promotes the idea that all humans carry immortal spirits that will go to another host after death. Cremation is also widely accepted in Spiritism. However, believers do require a certain period of time between the death and the cremation as they believe that the spirit can sometimes remain with the body for a time after death.

cremation services in Clarksville, TN

There are tons of options for you to honor and remember your lost loved one, be it through traditional burial or a cremation. You are sure to find the right solution for you, your family, and your beliefs. At the end of the day, no matter what you believe, the only important thing is that the deceased is treated with respect and remembered fondly by those that loved him or her.

Sykes Funeral Home & Crematory offers compassionate, expert, and considerate Clarksville, TN cremation services. We have experience working with people from all kinds of religious beliefs and backgrounds and would be happy to do what we can for you in your time of loss. Please stop by and visit us or give us a call to learn more about what we can do for you while you plan for a loved one’s service or preplan for your own passing.

cremation service in Clarksville, TN

Scattering Ashes After a Military Cremation Services

Once a military cremation service in Clarksville, TN is over the bereaved still have to make decisions about what to do with the ashes after a cremation.

There are a few different options, such as burying the ashes, keeping them in your home, or scattering them. If you want to go the scattering route, the following are a few tips and reminders for scattering ashes after a cremation service and honoring the military service of your lost loved one:

  • There are Different Scattering Methods – Scattering can mean more than just tossing ashes into the wind. There are in fact two main ways of scattering ashes: casting and trenching. Casting is scattering the ashes into the air, and trenching is burying the ashes just below the ground surface. You can also rake ashes into soil, cast ashes from an airplane, or even send ashes into space.
  • You Don’t Have to Scatter All the Ashes – You can scatter as much or as little of the ashes as you want. Sometimes different members of the family each take a turn scattering, or some of the ashes can be kept to be scattered at a later date, in a different location, or not at all.
  • Come Prepared – It seems obvious, but it’s important to make a clear plan for who will scatter the ashes, and this might not be as straightforward as it may seem. Sometimes families wish for a religious leader to do the scattering, or other times families hire a company to help.
  • Look Up Local Laws – Rules and regulations about where you can scatter ashes varies from state to state, and even city to city. Be sure to read up on your local laws to avoid getting fined for scattering in a prohibited place. The same goes for more unique scattering locations, such as at sea or in national parks. Sometimes you even need a permit.
  • Create Memories – You can take photographs of the scattering to help preserve memories, and to have something more concrete to honor the deceased. Sometimes people regret scattering as it takes away any concrete memorial, so the photographs can be a good stand in for the ashes themselves.
  • There Might be Bones – Most cremations reduce the body down to fine ash mixed with coarse, sand-like ash containing bone fragments. Be aware of this fact when considering scattering.
  • Check the Wind Direction – Be sure to take note of the wind direction on the day you want to scatter. You do not want to have ashes blown back into your face. It’s not unhealthy or dangerous, just very uncomfortable.

cremation service in Clarksville, TN

There are many ways to scatter ashes and memorialize a lost loved one that served in the military after a Clarksville, TN cremation service. Sykes Funeral Home & Crematory can give you any additional information you may require on cremations or military service funerals. Please stop by and visit us or give us a call to learn more about what we can do for you in your time of loss.

cremation service in Clarksville, TN

How to Choose the Right Cremation Urn for After a Military Service

Finding the perfect cremation urn after a loved one’s military cremation service in Clarksville, TN can be overwhelming. From trying to make sure you honor the deceased and their military service in the best way possible and taking care to stay in budget, not to manage dealing with grief, it can be hard to find the right cremation urn.

The following tips can go a long way to help you find the right cremation urn for your lost military servicemember:

  • Put the Deceased First – Not everyone will have a specific plan laid out for after their death but be sure to do exactly what your lost loved one laid out if he or she did so. If there is no plan in place, use your best judgement as to what he or she would have wanted. Was the deceased a big gardener, or a fan of protecting the environment? If so, you might want to consider an eco-friendly or garden urn. Was your lost loved one a big golfer? Look into golf-themed urns for a fun twist.
  • Think About Urn Use– There are different kinds of urns for different uses. For example, if you’re going to scatter the ashes, you can get a scattering urn. Or if you are going to cast the ashes from an airplane, you need a special airline safe urn. If the urn is going to be displayed outside, you need to be sure you get an outdoor safe urn.
  • Don’t Forget About Material – There are tons of different urn materials including wood, metal, crystal, natural stone, and even glass. You can narrow down your options by considering what material your loved one would value the most, and what material works with what you want the urn to do. For example, an outdoor or buried urn needs to be a different material than an indoor display urn.
  • Consider Urn Art– Urns can be made as beautiful as any piece or art, and they can range in style from painted and colored to specially molded and shaped. Art urns are also ideal for display, as they lend a unique and personalized air to the memorial.

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  • Size is Vital – Urn size varies, and you should consider size when shopping for an urn. If you’re going to display the urn, it should be able to fit in the place in which you want to display it. For example, if you want to place the urn on your fireplace mantle you need to be sure the base of the urn is the right size to fit on the mantle space. Larger urns are better when placed low to the ground, or even on the ground. Be aware of the space and the urn size when shopping.

If you would like more assistance looking for or buying an urn for after your loved one’s military Clarksville, TN cremation service, Sykes Funeral Home & Crematory is here for you. We offer a range of services designed to help you during your time of loss. Please give us a call today to learn more.