Home For Families Planning a Funeral
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Where to begin

Planning a funeral while coping with grief can feel overwhelming. But there are steps you can take right away to make the process go more smoothly.

Choose a funeral home.

An experienced funeral director will help guide you through many of the decisions to come.

Check for pre-planned arrangements.

Your loved one may have prepared ahead of time by pre-planning portions of their funeral. Ask family members if a funeral plan exists or contact your loved one’s attorney to see if one is available.

Reach out to family decision makers.

Work out which family members should be consulted about funeral decisions and find the best way for all of you to communicate.

Gather life story information.

Start putting together biographical information, photos, special memories, thoughts, attributes, and interests. This will help you create the obituary and eulogy and plan the service.

Understand your options.

Funeral directors have the knowledge and experience to help you understand your options, to explain the value of product features and to help create highly personalized, meaningful tributes.

Start thinking about the service.

If your family has ideas or wishes for the funeral service, start making a note of those to share with your funeral director.

Download the Complete Companion Guide

Support when you need it most

A licensed funeral director will help you make important decisions and ease the emotional strain of planning a loved one’s funeral. Seek out the service of a funeral director who:

Understands the funeral planning process

and the decisions you need to make to create a unique and meaningful funeral.

Arranges care for the deceased

and assists with administrative matters, such as filing the death certificate and publishing an obituary.

Handles all the important details

before and after the funeral, which may include a visitation and viewing, funeral service and graveside memorial.

Provides guidance and support

to help you and your family make important decisions and cope with the loss of your loved one.

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The funeral service is a statement by the family that says, “Someone precious to us has died. We are grieving and invite you to join us in remembering this special life and supporting each other."

Dr. Alan Wolfelt​

Burial, cremation and remembrance

How you lay a loved one to rest is one of the biggest decisions you will make. But no matter what you and your family decide, a licensed funeral director can help you make the tribute beautiful and memorable.


Select a wood or metal casket and personalization options that best reflects your loved one.  Also, consider where your loved one will be laid to rest – in a cemetery, a mausoleum or other location.

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A cremation service can include a visitation prior to cremation, along with a funeral or memorial service to honor your loved one. You can select a cremation casket, as well as a personalized urn for your loved one’s remains.​

View Cremation Products

Other Memorial Options

There are many ways to keep your loved one’s memory alive, from remembrance jewelry and keepsake medallions to video tributes and registry books.

At the service

As you plan the ceremony with your funeral director, there will be other important decisions you will make together, such as:

What kind of headstone will mark their final resting place and if an inscription or epitaph should be included

What types of music, readings, flowers, food, and personal items you would like at the service

Who will participate in the service by giving a eulogy, reading or acting as a pallbearer

Whether you want to create a video tribute as part of the service

Whether you’ll have a visitation, wake or some kind of graveside service

Download Funeral Planning Guide

Find a funeral home

Search for a licensed funeral home to support you on your healing journey.

More helpful resources

Read helpful information on planning a funeral, honoring loved ones, and planning a meaningful funeral service.