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Thread: Funeral aesthetics?

  1. #1
    Senior Member Ultralight's Avatar
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    Funeral aesthetics?

    As I mentioned in another thread, a good friend's father passed away.

    The showing (not really the funeral, as they are not having one) was really true to the guy's personality and values.

    Ron was a blue collar guy and he was in the casket wearing the tattered old blue jeans he was always wearing. He had a regular t-shirt on. There were no flowers because he was not the fancy type. Instead, his motorcycle helmet and leather jacket were the decorations by his casket.

    The photos were mostly of him and his wife, his friends, and his sons on their motorcycles. There were also pics of him with his wife, his sons, and his grandsons at picnics and parades in our hometown.

    Ron's oldest son (my close friend) told me: "We wanted to be true to dad, no flowers, no fuss, nothing fancy."

    This got me thinking about my parents and how their showings and such will be handled. My mom has already told me she wants me to write her obituary (while she is still alive, haha) and it must include this: "Anna was a lifelong liberal -- very liberal! -- Democrat! She enjoyed making jokes about Republicans, especially Trump, and her frequent refrain was 'Lobotomies for Republicans -- it ought to be the law!'"

    My question to you is: Do the aesthetics of your showing or funeral matter to you? Do you think your next of kin will honor your wishes?
    I came from a real tough neighborhood. I put my hand in some cement and felt another hand." -- Rodney Dangerfield

  2. #2
    Senior Member SteveinMN's Avatar
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    DW and I have preplanned our cremations (except for the date ). We chose not to go open-casket and we picked the default (i.e., cheapest) urn the cremation service would let us. Outside of the restrictions that imposes, whatever wakes/rememberance ceremonies/celebrations of life/funeral visitations the family needs for closure are up to them. We'll likely be leaving some money behind which could be used for such an event; if family wants something more expansive than that, they can pony up for the extra. That's "not us" and we don't need it. After all, we'll (individually or collectively) be dead.
    If Americans expended even a fraction of the energy on civic engagement that we spend on consumer ideology, our democracy would be much healthier. Can you imagine people camping out to vote? -- Charles Roberts, Amherst, Mass., Nov. 25, 2006

  3. #3
    Senior Member iris lilies's Avatar
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    It doesnt matter to me what my service is or what my obituary says.

    My uncle recently died, and his son, a professional writer, wrote his obituary. It was lovely to read. One of my garden club lady friends is dying, and she is also a professional writer, and she is writing her own obituary.

  4. #4
    Senior Member bae's Avatar
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    I have a preplanned longship burial, and if my wishes are not followed, my estate goes elsewhere.

  5. #5
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    I want to be placed in a tree. It is apparently illegal here in the US, but a way of treating dead bodies in Tibet or Nepal. I don't want anyone getting in legal trouble so if it is not legal by the time I die they can donate me to the body farm. For the service I want everyone to meditate, eat some vegetarian food, and look at my middle school pictures to have a nice laugh.

    My mom wants to be cremated so she does not have to be near her mother in law, geez

  6. #6
    Senior Member Simplemind's Avatar
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    I wrote my dad's obit, which I had fun with and it got passed around a lot on facebook (http://obits.oregonlive.com/obituari...?pid=188454211). My son and I cremated him after we stuffed his pockets with mementos and surrounded him with is favorite foods ( a couple from restaurants where his favorite waitresses put it together and had the staff sign the boxes ) and his favorite booze. We toasted him with his favorite scotch, said our goodbyes and then my son wheeled him in. It was strangely perfect and serene. My mom had died 6 years prior and we also sent her off with all her favorite things but didn't do anything behind the scenes. I wish we had been able to do that for her as well.
    If my son is willing and able, I would like the same for me and after I want him to sprinkle a bit of me in all my favorite vacation places that I will provide for.

  7. #7
    Senior Member iris lilies's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Simplemind View Post
    I wrote my dad's obit, which I had fun with and it got passed around a lot on facebook (http://obits.oregonlive.com/obituari...?pid=188454211). My son and I cremated him after we stuffed his pockets with mementos and surrounded him with is favorite foods ( a couple from restaurants where his favorite waitresses put it together and had the staff sign the boxes ) and his favorite booze. We toasted him with his favorite scotch, said our goodbyes and then my son wheeled him in. It was strangely perfect and serene. My mom had died 6 years prior and we also sent her off with all her favorite things but didn't do anything behind the scenes. I wish we had been able to do that for her as well.
    If my son is willing and able, I would like the same for me and after I want him to sprinkle a bit of me in all my favorite vacation places that I will provide for.
    great ideas, great job with your dad!

  8. #8
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    The only thing I would like done when I die is that an obituary be posted. Other than that, I would prefer nothing. I put a name of a cheap cremation company in my estate plan book and bought an "expensive" urn at a garage sale (not ...haha). I would rather those closest to me take a trip in my name, take a few of my ashes along and disperse them there... It seems wasteful to me to spend thousands of dollars on the dead. MY FIL used to say "I don't care what you do. You can freeze my a$$ and pound me into the ground as a fencepost!" My sentiments exactly. I did say to my family .. "Do what you want. I truly don't care."

  9. #9
    Senior Member rosarugosa's Avatar
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    Simplemind, that was the best obituary ever!

  10. #10
    Senior Member jp1's Avatar
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    When my FIL passed away 5 years ago he and MIL encouraged all their friends and family, scattered across the country, to come visit him before he died and not come for the funeral. Every time the doorbell rang he'd pretend to be asleep in his chair and MIL would tell them "give him a little kiss on the forehead. that usually wakes him up." He'd open his eyes, look confused, then raise his arms and roar like a lion, startling them. It was totally his personality to do something like that and it was a great way to lighten the mood of the occasion.

    The funeral itself was standard Catholic and he was interred at the military cemetery in St. Louis with a formal military burial ceremony.

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