Limo driving

BENEFITS OF A FUNERAL HOME NEAR THE CEMETERY

Limo driving

One of the most important considerations when choosing a funeral home is proximity to the cemetery. A funeral home near the cemetery allows for greater convenience in transporting the body, removes stress and anxiety associated with a long procession to the cemetery, and holds additional benefits that should not be overlooked.

Many people do not give funeral processions a second thought when making end-of-life planning decisions. However, it may play a more significant part in the decision-making process once the value of convenience becomes apparent.

Here are several positive attributes of short funeral processions:

1. Holding a funeral service at a funeral home near the cemetery reduces travel time for family members and those participating in the procession to the burial site. Moving along shorter distances minimizes stress associated with traveling and allows for more time to spend together during the service. Additionally, it prevents encountering unexpected traffic delays that can lead to lateness and added anxiety.

Saying goodbye is a stressful experience, and a smooth transition from the chapel service to the gravesite is ideal. It is best to feel calm upon arrival at the cemetery gates. Being in a relaxed state will ease the process of saying final goodbyes.

2. Reduced travel time in a procession creates safer conditions. Funeral attendees often follow the procession through red lights and stop signs to keep everyone together. Most motorists are aware of and adhere to funeral procession etiquette. However, there is always a chance that an accident may occur due to a deviation from traffic rules.

Keep in mind that processions date back to ancient times. They have evolved over centuries but continue to operate as a contiguous line of cars, even with hectic, modern-day traffic conditions. Navigating what could be a fairly extensive line of vehicles through today’s bustling roadways and intersections can be a daunting task.

While processions are carried out as a sign of respect towards the deceased, reducing the drive time does not diminish this observance.

3. Using a funeral home near the cemetery reduces travel costs associated with the transportation of the body and for those attending services. Hearse and limousine fees are generally based on a specific number of miles. Prices can increase per mile after going above the preset distance.

It is worthwhile to consider all of these benefits when making funeral arrangements. The advantages remain true whether planning a funeral at the time of need or in advance.

We are Here for You!

For those looking for a Jewish funeral home close to a cemetery on Long Island, New York, consider Star of David Memorial Chapels. We are located moments away from many of Long Island’s Jewish cemeteries, including New MontefioreBeth MosesWellwood, and Mount Ararat. The uniquely convenient location of our funeral chapels enables us to think of ourselves as “Procession-Proof.”

Aside from our advantageous location, we offer a wide range of services to meet each family’s needs. Contact our funeral directors if you need additional information. Our team will be happy to answer any questions. Call us at 631-454-9600.

Tree with snow in a cemetery

How are Funerals in the Winter Handled?

Tree with snow in a cemetery

There is no ideal time for a funeral, but some seasons are more conducive to assembling at a cemetery for burial than others. When the colder temperatures arrive, and a funeral has to be scheduled, many people ask, “How are funerals in the winter handled?”

The presence of extremely low temperatures, wind, snow, and ice can complicate an already challenging situation. Adverse weather conditions can make travel hazardous for attendees from out of town. Walking and standing within an unplowed cemetery in the cold can be detrimental, especially for elderly mourners. 

Despite these circumstances, a few measures can be taken to make funerals held in the winter months more comfortable for those involved.

Be Prepared with the Right Clothing and Footwear

Layering is key to staying warm and comfortable during a winter funeral service. Wear a proper jacket and accessories, such as hats, scarves, and gloves to protect your body. Additionally, if warranted, select snow boots over the footwear typically chosen for an occasion such as this. 

Stay Indoors as Much as You Can

It is best to avoid a rushed graveside service due to the inability to withstand the elements. Feeling bad for uncomfortable attendees can cause eulogies and heartfelt words to be abbreviated or hastily spoken to finish up. Plan accordingly so your loved one receives the dignified remembrance that they deserve.

Although burial is synonymous with being outdoors, it is feasible to limit the time outside as much as possible without sacrificing the quality of the funeral services. First, you can elect to hold the service indoors, within the funeral home’s chapels. The rabbi will perform a bulk of the speech and prayers during this time. Family members or other individuals wishing to speak would do so here as well. Therefore, reducing the time of the interment service at the gravesite.  

Upon arrival at the cemetery, stay inside your car until it is necessary to leave it. There is no reason to extend the time for anyone, especially elderly, infirm mourners,  to huddle around the graveside. Prayers and other Jewish traditions, such as shoveling dirt onto the casket, will still be part of the interment.

Offer Alternatives for Those Who are Traveling or Physically Unable to Withstand the Weather

If anyone cannot travel due to adverse conditions, offer a live-streamed version of the funeral. This will allow them to be present without a physical presence. To capture sentiments, create a memorial page or use the decedent’s funeral service page for family members and friends to share memories and stories about the deceased. This is an excellent way for those unable to attend the funeral service to express their love and grief, creating an online space that brings people together in their shared sorrow.

We Can Help with Funeral Planning in the Winter

Funerals in the wintertime can be difficult, but there are ways to make them more comfortable and meaningful for everyone involved. With the proper preparation, you can create an atmosphere of support and community during a difficult time. 

In the event of inclement weather, we welcome you to hold a funeral service in one of our two beautiful chapels. Our Waters of Babylon Chapel can seat up to 300 attendees, and our more intimate Isaiah Chapel can accommodate up to 100 attendees.

If you have any concerns about how Jewish funerals in the winter are handled, contact our funeral directors at Star of David Memorial Chapels on Long Island, New York. Our team will guide you through every step of the process and will be happy to answer any questions. Call us today at 631-454-9600.

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When Someone Dies

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THE LOSS OF A PARENT OR SENIOR LOVED ONE

Polly Cummings was not prepared for the death of her husband Walter 13 years ago. Although the 53-year-old had a grim prognosis and year-long illness, she was so focused on driving him to chemotherapy and mothering her two children that she didn’t think about the time when he would no longer be there.

“It was a source of pride for Walter to do the finances, so I let him,” says Cummings. “But, when he died, I was not prepared. I didn’t know where to start. Instead of flailing around, I should have talked ahead of time to his accountant, bank and financial advisor. It made the loss even worse.”

You can chalk up her lapse to caregiver exhaustion, inexperience, and something else: our society’s discomfort with discussing death, whether it’s our own or someone else’s. Slowly, though, that attitude is shifting, thanks to 75 million “tell-it-like-it-is” baby boomers.

5 WAYS TO PREPARE FOR THE LOSS OF A PARENT

old women

There’s another reason, too: experts believe that if you address the impending loss of a spouse due to a terminal illness, or a parent’s aging, you are likely to fare better — and in the process, may give the person you love peace of mind.

“We prepare more for a vacation than we do for death and loss,” says Shelley Whizin, a certified death midwife who recently spoke on the topic at a Motion Picture and Television Fund women’s conference in Los Angeles.

Laurel Lewis, a nurse and end-of-life expert also on the program, says that “loss can be complicated. It’s not just a physical separation, but also emotional and spiritual. Usually, there’s a financial component. You are confused, scared, vulnerable and forced to make big life decisions in an altered state.”

On the other hand, Lewis notes, “If you tie things up before the loss, you can live your life more fully and the grieving process may be shorter than if you were in denial.”

When a loss isn’t predicted but is dreaded and inevitable, it is sometimes called “anticipatory grief.” Like the grief you experience after a death, you may feel anger, denial, depression, fear, guilt and sadness. The “good” part about it is that there’s time to do and say the things you want.

You can plan and you should.

flowers

Here are some ways to prepare:

1. BE GOOD TO YOURSELF.

Caregivers are always told this, but if you are able to eat well, exercise, find a place to vent and sleep, you will be in better shape to cope. Meditation, support groups, walks and yoga are also good ways to think about you.

2. CONSERVE YOUR ENERGY.

Rather than be barraged by calls and emails from family and friends seeking an update, communicate just one time. It could be a conference call or a website like CaringBridge. Another site, Lotsa Helping Hands, lets caregivers post the help they need and others sign up for duties. You might also want to create a family website and divvy up jobs. One sibling can make sure all documents are in order and have a master list of passwords, while another can research funeral arrangements, for instance.

3. DON’T WAIT FOR THE FUNERAL.

You can say all these wonderful things about the person after they are gone, but what about honoring them or telling them before? You can make a video of the people in your parent’s life talking about what your parent means to them, and share it with your parent before they pass.

4. SEIZE THE OPPORTUNITY!

You want to feel that you have done everything you can for your loved one and for yourself. Do you need to say “thank you,” “I forgive you,” “I’m sorry,” or “I love you” to a parent?

5. TAKE CUES FROM WHO IS ILL.

Some people want to talk about what they’re going through or what happens after. For Cummings’s husband Walter, it was an off-limits topic. Before Cumming’s mother died at age 93, though, she talked candidly about her feelings and wishes. That put Cumming and her sisters “at peace” after her mom passed away.

Have you been through this experience or are you going through it currently? What do you wish you had done or known while preparing for the loss of a parent? We’d like to hear your stories in the comments below.

How to prepare for death