Obituaries

Shirley Wagler
B: 1945-05-21
D: 2018-02-15
View Details
Wagler, Shirley
Mabel St. Angelo
B: 1939-01-19
D: 2018-02-11
View Details
St. Angelo, Mabel
Eileen Thompson
B: 1928-03-16
D: 2018-02-07
View Details
Thompson, Eileen
Hermann Wohlfahrt
B: 1936-01-07
D: 2018-02-04
View Details
Wohlfahrt, Hermann
Ronald Beaulne
B: 1931-10-01
D: 2018-01-20
View Details
Beaulne, Ronald
Leslie Harrison
B: 1940-09-04
D: 2018-01-20
View Details
Harrison, Leslie
John Allan
B: 1961-10-09
D: 2018-01-17
View Details
Allan, John
Gosselin Boivin
B: 1946-05-20
D: 2018-01-11
View Details
Boivin, Gosselin
Kathleen Gould
B: 1930-11-08
D: 2018-01-11
View Details
Gould, Kathleen
William Hicks
B: 1940-10-22
D: 2018-01-08
View Details
Hicks, William
Robert Lauzon
B: 1951-02-03
D: 2018-01-05
View Details
Lauzon, Robert
Gloria Hunter
B: 1946-12-15
D: 2018-01-04
View Details
Hunter, Gloria
John O'Connor
B: 1941-11-21
D: 2017-12-31
View Details
O'Connor, John
Anthony Cardas
B: 1928-01-15
D: 2017-12-28
View Details
Cardas, Anthony
Rita Montemurro
B: 1935-01-16
D: 2017-12-27
View Details
Montemurro, Rita
Alexander Dunlop
B: 1934-10-12
D: 2017-12-18
View Details
Dunlop, Alexander
Valerie Peddle
B: 1940-02-14
D: 2017-12-14
View Details
Peddle, Valerie
Leita Voicey
B: 1941-04-17
D: 2017-12-13
View Details
Voicey, Leita
Margaret Davies
B: 1933-02-24
D: 2017-12-08
View Details
Davies, Margaret
Robin Davis
B: 1956-03-04
D: 2017-12-07
View Details
Davis, Robin
Michelle Price
B: 1979-10-07
D: 2017-12-06
View Details
Price, Michelle

Search

Use the form above to find your loved one. You can search using the name of your loved one, or any family name for current or past services entrusted to our firm.

Click here to view all obituaries
Search Obituaries

Celebration Of Life

celebration of life memorial serviceIt's interesting; funerals and celebrations-of-life have much in common, yet they often appear very different.  Each is a ceremony; a gathering of people who share a common loss.  It's just that one is more rooted in tradition, while the other is the result of recent changes in social values.  But both serve to do three things:

1. Help the bereaved family, and their community, publically acknowledge the death of one of their own.

2. Support the grieving family by surrounding them with caring friends, co-workers and neighbors.

3. Move the deceased from one social status to another.

Yet they achieve those things in very different ways.  First, let's take a closer look at what most of us commonly see as very traditional funerals.

Celebration of Life

Many families today want a service which celebrates the life of their loved one.  We introduce them to the concept of a celebration of life, and provide support in designing a life celebration that is as unique as the life of their loved one.  

We always enjoy working together with families in planning a celebration of life for their loved one.  While it can be a challenge to put together an event that both pays tribute to and celebrates the life and spirit of, a complex individual; it's also one of the most rewarding things any one of us can do for someone we've loved and lost.

Sarah York, opens her beautifully-crafted book, Remembering Well, with the very personal story about how her family chose to pay tribute to her mother. "My mother died in April 1983. . . she didn't want a funeral.  'Get together and have a party' she had said when the topic was allowed to come up."  However, she was quick to tell readers that the survivors did not honor the request.  "We needed the ritual. We needed to say good-bye, but we also needed a ritual that would honor her spirit and would be faithful to her values and beliefs."

celebration of lifeWhen Ms. York acknowledge the position of her family; that they needed not a party but a ritual; she teaches us all something important: the celebration of life service events we plan with families should be shaped as much by their own emotional and spiritual needs, as their desire to celebrate the life lived.

While life celebrations are not burdened by social expectations - they can be pretty much anything you want them to be - it's important to realize that the event you're planning should meet the emotional needs of the guests.  So, think about exactly who will be there, and what they're likely to want or need.  Then, bring in those unique lifestyle and personality characteristics of the deceased; perhaps add live music or refreshments, and you've got the beginnings of a remarkable celebration of life.

Celebrations Of Life are intended to lift everyone's spirits by focusing on positive memories.  And as we wrote in the above introduction, if you'd like to learn more about life celebrations, we invite you to contact us with any questions. 

The Funeral

celebration of life memorial serviceIt's not surprising funerals have been around for a very long time.  Composed of three activities, the visitation, the funeral service and the committal service performed at the graveside; this funeral is the one we'd easily recognize from contemporary literature and film.

The Visitation: Held prior to the funeral, often the night before but sometimes on the same day, the visitation (or viewing) is a time when people come to support the family and, more importantly, pay their respects to the deceased.  This often involves stepping up to the casket to view the body; either in the company of a member of the surviving family or on your own.

The Funeral Service: Commonly held in the a church or public venue such as a community hall, the traditional funeral service is led by an officiant of one kind or another; most commonly a pastor or the funeral director.  This individual follows a very predictable funeral order of service which includes the singing of hymns; and invocations, Bible recitations, Scripture readings, and prayers led by the officiant.

The Committal Service: This takes place at the cemetery, after a slow and respectful automobile procession from the place where the funeral was held.  The committal service ends when the casketed remains are lowered into the ground and final prayers are said.

If you'd like to know more about the history of funerals in the United States, you may like to visit the website of the National Museum of Funeral History.  But for now, it's enough to know that a funeral service traditionally has these three distinct components.  Now let's look at a celebration-of-life service.

Are You Undecided? Turn to Us

We've got years of experience listening, brainstorming, and advising families how they can best pay tribute to a beloved family member.  That means we're the perfect people to help you decide between a funeral and a celebration-of -life.  We'll explore your funeral service options with you in detail, taking all the time you need.

In the book Chocolat, by Joanne Harris, you'll find this fundamental truth: “Life is what you celebrate. All of it. Even its end.”  As funeral professionals we help families express reverence for life. Let us do that for your family. Give us a call to speak with a member of our staff.

Sources:
Barbara Kingsolover, The Poisonwood Bible
Joanne Harris, Chocolat
Remembering Well: Rituals for Celebrating Life & Mourning Death, Sara York