Looking at Cemeteries as Landscape Architecture

Are you thinking about full-body donation or cremation after death? Or, have you thought about a green burial in a cemetery that eschews traditional memorials? If so, you are part of a rising majority of citizens who seek alternatives to traditional funerals. In the process, this movement has pushed the traditional U.S. cemetery into a category that relegates these burial grounds to open-air museums.

Funeral Home Options

Have you thought about how your body might be handled after you die? If so, you may have considered creating options for your burial now, even when young. But, the thought of walking into a funeral home to discuss those options might keep you from making those decisions.

Understanding the Modern Christian Funeral

If you were asked to attend a Christian funeral, what can you expect? Without going into the history of Christianity, a few notes about Christian funerals can provide basics for those who are not Christians. Even if you are Christian, you may be a Catholic and the deceased may have been a Baptist. You may realize, in this latter case, that the Christian burial for the deceased may be a new experience for you.

“Buffalo Soldiers” Reburied at Santa Fe National Cemetery

A ceremony memorializing 64 soldiers and their family members who protected southwestern New Mexico from Apache attacks in the mid-1800s was held July 28 by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and the Department of Interior. The remains of the Fort Craig residents originally buried at the fort’s cemetery and disinterred by the Interior Department in 2007 were recently reburied with full military honors at VA’s Santa Fe National Cemetery.

On Sale! Cemetery Plots

Hard times may bring harsh measures, and – according to this Washington Post article – people have resorted to selling their cemetery plots at reduced prices to help make ends meet. On one hand, this attempt to sell plots at reduced prices means now is the time to snatch up some cemetery property. On the other hand, if you were making a decision for a full-body donation or cremation and you no longer needed your plot, this is not the time to sell to see a profit or to break even.

A DIY Casket Now is Available

Do current casket prices make you wish that you could live forever? Or, does it make you want to look for another solution to the inevitable death and burial? One man, after learning that a relative’s funeral cost $12,900, decided to go another route and offer people a choice. His casket kits can be assembled with a screwdriver and glue and cost only $250.

DNA Tests for Fallen and Buried Soldiers at Fromelles

On 19-20 July 1916, the Battle of Fromelles was fought in France during World War I. It was the first time that Australian Imperial Forces (AIF) saw action on the Western Front, and 5,533 Australian soldiers were killed, wounded or taken prisoner in an operation that the Australian War Memorial describes as the “worst 24 hours in Australia’s entire history.” To compound the misery, the Germans buried the bodies of the Australian dead in mass graves shortly after the battle.

One Solution for Eternal Preservation

Do you want to be preserved for eternity once you’ve died? One solution to this problem of eternal preservation was discovered by Dr. Bill Bass (creator of the Body Farm) in 2006, when J.P. Richardson, III asked Dr. Bass to examine the body of his father upon exhumation. Richardson’s father – Jiles Perry Richardson, Jr. – was known as the “Big Bopper,” or the musician/songwriter who died in the plane crash that also killed Buddy Holly and Richie Valens in 1959.

Motorcyclists – What a Way to Go!

Are you a motorcycle enthusiast? No matter your two-wheeled proclivities, as this week is Sturgis week in South Dakota. In honor of the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, Deathcare.com offers some interesting ways to pass to the great Motocross in the sky.

Historic Funeral Traditions: Mormons

Mormons, also known as the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, is headquartered in Salt Lake City, Utah. The Mormons see themselves as a new branch of Christianity; therefore, they often use Christian funeral practices, but they have developed a culture and customs that include how they see death and bury their dead.