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Funeral Planning Checklist

Initial Preparations (Funeral Checklist Part 1)
Collect personal information and compose the Obituary. Include vital statistics, memberships and associations, as well as hobbies the Deceased enjoyed.

Plan the type of funeral service you will be having:
Either a religous-based (such as a Christian Funeral), traditional funeral service or non-traditional memorial service.

Choose a funeral home and cemetery.

Choose location for funeral service.

Decide when the funeral will be held.

Notify close family and friends.

Decide if there will there be a theme to the Funeral Service.  The theme can be a hobby the Deceased enjoyed, their career, culture, or their relationship to you.

If applicable, some Fraternal Orders and the Military may provide special ceremonies for the funeral service. Check with the local branch of the service the deceased was enlisted in or the Fraternal Order for more information.

The Funeral Home (Funeral Checklist Part 2)
Choose burial or cremation.

Select a casket or cremation container.

Select a cremation urn or burial vault.

Choose a viewing and visitation location and schedule for family and well wishers.

Decide on the type of flower arrangements to be provided by the family. Relatives and other well wishers may also need to be advised as to your desired floral selections.

Consider setting up pictures or a photo album to remind well wishers and family of good times or special events in the life of the deceased.

Decide which religious or fraternal items are to be displayed.

Select clothing and jewelery for the deceased to wear.

Select special music, hymns, and solos for the funeral or memorial service.   

Select scripture, funeral poems or literature to be read at the funeral and gravesite, if applicable.

Memorial Pieces (Funeral Checklist Part 3)
Choose print components. ie. Funeral Programs, Posters, Prayer cards.

Decide who will be responsible for producing memorial printing.

Write Eulogy to be read at the service and included in funeral program.

Compile photos to be included in funeral program and displayed at service.

Select guest book.

Collect any items of the deceased that can be used to make the service personal. For example: Photographs, video, Childhood items, hobbies, music, or candles.

Participants  (Funeral Checklist Part 4)
Choose clergy or officiator.

Select either a Pianist, Organist, Flutist, Soloist, or Flutist.

Select pallbearers.  Pallbearers are typically grandchildren, nephews, co-workers, close friends, members of the same church, or social club, among others.

Select family member or friend to perform the eulogy.

Select family member or friend to read scripture or literature.

Cemetery Selections  (Funeral Checklist Part 5)
Select a burial or cremation plot, if one has not yet been selected.

Select a memorial or grave marker and inscription. A temporary marker may be selected if a permanent marker has not been purchased or engraved.

Decide upon gravesite transportation. Consider who will provide transportation for the family to the grave site. Transportation of the deceased is usually provided by the funeral home.

Final Arrangements  (Funeral Checklist Part 6)
Apply for death certificates.

Apply for a burial permit.

Request preparation and embalming.

Publish obituary through newspaper, online newspaper site or an obituary website.  If needed, some funeral homes may assist in the writing of the obituary for a fee.

Arrange location and food for the reception, if having one.