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cremation services in Penn Township, PA

How Do I Know I’ll Get My Loved One’s Remains?

Even as cremation services in Penn Township, PA and beyond grow in popularity, many people still have lots of questions and concerns when it comes to the process. One of the main concerns the bereaved have with cremation is how their loved one’s remains will be identified throughout the cremation process. Many people hear false horror stories of families being returned the wrong cremains, or just being given bags of wood ash or even of sand. These rumors lead to a lot of concern over the cremation identification process.

However, there is no reason for these concerns as all licensed cremation providers have thorough and effective identification procedures in place to ensure accuracy and dignity. Most licensed cremation providers are more than happy to walk clients through their individual identification process. Don’t be ashamed to ask for these details, as most businesses understand these concerns and are happy to help alleviate them. It’s important for you to be 100% comfortable with your provider and their practices.

It can be difficult to ask questions surrounding such delicate and potentially painful topics. If you’re unsure of what to ask surrounding identification during the cremation process, try these questions such as:

  • How can I be sure my loved one is the one you are cremating?
  • How can I be sure of this if I choose a cremation without a viewing?
  • How are the deceased identified?
  • How does this process change if I am not there when he or she passes?
  • In what ways do you certify that the ashes I am returned are those of my loved one?

If the cremation provider is unable or unwilling to answer questions such as these, consider taking your business elsewhere. It’s vital that you feel comfortable with the cremation process.

Remember, in most states, crematories are obligated to carry out two different identification processes to ensure the deceased are correctly identified based on the name provided by the authorized agent or the bereaved.

  • First, the deceased’s name, as provided by the bereaved or authorized agent, will be clearly listed on the cremation container.
  • Second, a metal bracelet, disk, or other tokens will be placed in the container with the deceased. This metal tag will not be broken down during the cremation process and will remain with the cremated ashes to further ensure identification.

If you’re still not comfortable, you can always ask for additional identification steps. You can ask for a detailed explanation of the cremation process in writing, have the cremation provider do a comparison of the deceased to a current photo of your loved one before the cremation begins, ask the cremation provider to do a final identification check based on a listed unique detail like a tattoo or birthmark.

funeral home in Penn Township, PA

Patrick T. Lanigan Funeral Home and Crematory, Inc. is here to help if you would like to learn more about the body identification process or Penn Township, PA cremation services. Stop by and visit us today or give us a call.

funeral home in Penn Township, PA

Questions We Ask Ourselves After the Death of a Loved One

Dealing with the loss of a loved one is going to be difficult, and will be a long journey, no matter you choose to have a service at a funeral home in Penn Township, PA or a more non-traditional service. One part of the journey is asking yourself questions about the loss.

These questions usually fall into two categories: Why and How. “Why did this happen to us?” “Why did God let something like this happen?” “How will I start to feel better?” “How do I find the positive in this loss?” If you’re asking yourself these or similar questions, you are definitely not alone. Have compassion and understanding with yourself as you grieve, and don’t try to overthink what you’re going through. Most importantly, talk about your feelings and experiences either with a loved one or a professional.

Though everyone can find themselves asking different questions, as everyone responds to grief differently, there are some common themes seen across many different grief journeys, such as these five:

  • What Should I Do if I Feel Like I’ll Never Get Over the Loss? Death and loss aren’t something one should try to overcome, especially since death and loss aren’t things that anyone can fix. Instead of trying to fix the grief, learn to live with it. It will adapt as you grow, and you will slowly begin to move forward.
  • What’s Wrong with Me? If you feel like your grief is different or weird, don’t worry. Nothing is wrong with you. We all grieve in different ways. You might be grieving differently that someone that is facing the exact same loss as you, and that’s OK. Even if it feels like no one can understand you, try talking about your feelings.
  • Why Aren’t My Friends Supporting Me? Many people don’t know how to help someone that is grieving, as it’s such a personal thing to deal with. Your friends, coworkers, or even family simply might not know how to relate to what you’re going through, or they might be afraid of offending you. Tell them how you feel, and what they can do to better support you.
  • How Can I Tell My Doctor That I Don’t Want Medication? Just do it. Communication is key with your health professional, especially when it comes to mental health. It’s vital that you communicate with your doctor if you don’t want to take medication, as then he or she can come up with a different plan to help you.
  • Why Don’t I Feel Better Yet? Losing someone you love isn’t like breaking a leg or spraining your wrist. There is no set amount of time that it will take your loss to heal. Let yourself grieve as long as you need to. You will start to feel better over time as you slowly reach healing milestones. Celebrate your small victories as you heal.

funeral home in Penn Township, PA

Patrick T. Lanigan Funeral Home and Crematory, Inc. is here to help if you want to learn more about dealing with grief or Penn Township, PA funeral homes.

cremation services in North Versailles, PA

Fun Facts About Cremation Services

It’s a good idea to know all you can before a death as a time of loss is not a good time to learn.

Many bereaved have questions about the cremation process, which is understandable as its not common knowledge how it works and its done. This article offers interesting facts about cremation services in North Versailles, PA to give guidance on these sensitive matters.

To begin, the cremation chamber, sometimes called an oven or a retort, operates between 1,400- and 1,800-degrees Fahrenheit. This high heat is necessary to break down the body into small fragments of bone and ash and is generally produced by propane or natural gas. Most cremation ovens are made out of fire-resistant bricks and special masonry. The fire-resistant bricks line the interior of the chamber on the ceiling and walls.

Specially made masonry materials cover the bottom of the chamber as that is the area that is exposed to the highest temperatures. Cremation oven walls are usually about 6 inches think to keep the extreme heat contained. They can have manually or mechanically operated doors depending on the model and design. Organic body materials like skin, tissue, organs and muscle are oxidized and then vaporized during the cremation process, as the human body is mostly made of water, bone and carbon.

These vapors are filtered and released through the oven’s exhaust system. All that remains after a cremation is bone fragments and non-organic materials like artificial bones or joints, implants, or dental work. All jewelry and removable medical devices are taken off the body before the cremation. The bone fragments are separated from non-organic materials and then left to cool.

After cooling, they are processed and broken down into what we call ashes, with a texture like coarse sand. These ashes are placed in sealed bag and returned to the bereaved so they can inurn, bury, scatter or spread them as they so choose. Also, all bodies are placed in a cremation container before the cremation takes places and for the duration of the process. This is to stay in compliance with health and safety codes and to maintain the dignity of the deceased before, during and after the cremation. There are certain container specifications that also must be met for health and safety laws, but the remainder of the container details can be chose by the bereaved.

cremation services in North Versailles, PA

Many choose standard corrugated boxes, and others choose wooden containers or caskets. No matter what kind of container is chosen, its purpose is to hold the body before the cremation and break down entirely during the cremation, so no residue is left.

These are just a few interesting facts about cremation services and how they work. Patrick T. Lanigan Funeral Home and Crematory, Inc. is here to help if you have more questions about the cremation process or would like to learn more about your options for North Versailles, PA cremation services. We offer a wide range of services designed to help you in your time of loss. Please stop by and visit us or give us a call to learn more.

North Versailles, PA funeral homes

Songs to Play at Your Lost Loved One’s Funeral Home

Music is a powerful tool that can evoke emotion and mood, especially at North Versailles, PA funeral homes. There are many different kinds of funeral home songs out there, from traditional to modern and everything in between.

When choosing funeral songs, many bereaved like to pick music that the deceased would have enjoyed, but it isn’t limited to just the lost loved one’s preferences. In fact, there are an amazing number of options when it comes to funeral songs. So how do you choose? For starters, you can take into account what kind of music the deceased would have enjoyed, as the point of the funeral is to celebrate his or her life.

Also, try to choose music that the funeral guests will enjoy, too. You can even try playing a few different kinds of music to try and meet everyone’s tastes and preferences, though you shouldn’t stress about meeting everyone’s tastes as that’s almost impossible to accomplish. You also need to choose songs that go along with your plan for the funeral. Think about if you want songs that speak about death and spending eternity in heaven, remind you of certain qualities and characteristics of the deceased, allow for reflection over fond memories, and your lost loved one enjoyed.

You can also choose the music by getting inspired with common and popular funeral song choices. There are tons of options out there, from common to more unique. Here are some that might inspire you. This list includes country, modern, classic and traditional options.

  • You Should Be Here by Cole Swindell
  • Lay Me Down by Sam Smith
  • Hallelujah by Jeff Buckley (there are many other iterations by other artists)
  • Let It Be by The Beatles
  • Broken Halos by Chris Stapleton
  • Over You by Miranda Lambert
  • Drink a Beer by Luke Bryan
  • See You Again by Wiz Khalifa & Charlie Puth
  • Only One by Kanye West and performed by Kanye West and Paul McCartney
  • Supermarket Flowers by Ed Sheeran
  • Who You’d Be Today by Kenny Chesney
  • When I Get Where I’m Going by Brad Paisley
  • In the Arms of an Angel by Sarah McLachlan
  • What A Wonderful World by Louis Armstrong
  • Hero by Mariah Carey
  • If You’re Reading This by Tim McGraw
  • One More Day by Diamond Rio
  • Fix You by Coldplay
  • Hear You Me by Jimmy Eat World
  • How Long Will I Love You by Ellie Goulding
  • Last Kiss by Pearl Jam

North Versailles, PA funeral homesPatrick T. Lanigan Funeral Home and Crematory, Inc. is here to help if you want more guidance on music choices or would like to learn more about your options for North Versailles, PA funeral homes. Please pay us a visit or give us a call today. After all, choosing the kind of music, you want to play at your lost loved one’s funeral is a very personal experience, so there is no right or wrong answer. All music can evoke powerful emotions and memories, so go with your heart when making the decision.

cremation services in Monroeville, PA

All About Spreading Ashes

One of the most common choices for final disposition after cremation services in Monroeville, PA is spreading the ashes. Spreading ashes can be as simple or as complicated as you want it to be, as there are a variety of different methods to choose from, some traditional and simple and some much more unique and elaborate.

Some scattering methods include:

  • Trenching – Trenching is when the bereaved dig a shallow pit in which to deposit and lightly bury the ashes. This way, the ashes aren’t technically buried but they are contained to a specific spot so they can be visited or honored.
  • Plant a Tree – Tree urns turn cremated remains into fertilizer for new trees, giving your lost loved one new life through loss. You can plant the tree anywhere you want from a backyard to a special park. The tree will always be there as a place you can visit when you miss the deceased or want to reflect on their life.
  • Raking – Raking is similar to trenching, but instead of digging a small hole in which the ashes are covered the ashes are raking into the soil with a tool like a rake or shovel. Many people choose to rake ashes into a significant place like the yard of a home or a special park.
  • Space Launch – Whether your loved one always wanted to be an astronaut, loved stars and space, or you just want to give him or her a very special send off, you can launch the ashes into space. There are a few specialized businesses that launch ashes into space for a significant fee. The ashes will orbit the earth for a few months and then vaporize when the re-enter the atmosphere.
  • Aerial Scattering – People also scatter ashes into the air by climbing up a mountain or hill, going to the edge of a cliff, or using the wind in an open plain or meadow. You can also hire a specialized plane to scatter the ashes from way up in the air.
  • Water Scattering – Water has almost always had a connection with spirituality and religion, making it a very popular choice for scattering ashes. Scatter ashes directly into the water or release them in a water-safe biodegradable urn.
  • Skydiving Scattering – If the deceased was adventurous or free-spirited what better way to scatter his or her ashes than while skydiving? This unconventional ash spreading method helps you literally and figuratively let go of your lost loved one.
  • Fireworks – Spreading ashes is usually a somber experience, but why not make it more fun and celebratory with fireworks? Firework companies make fireworks using the cremated remains to have the deceased be a part of a spectacular light show in the sky.

cremation services in Monroeville, PA

Patrick T. Lanigan Funeral Home and Crematory, Inc. is here to help if you have more questions about spreading ashes or about Monroeville, PA cremation services. We offer a wide range of expert services and would be happy to help you however we can in your time of loss. Please stop by and visit us or give us a call today.

funeral home in Monroeville, PA

What Can You Use as a Cremation Urn?

There are lots of options when it comes to urns for after a cremation at a funeral home in Monroeville, PA. You can always choose timeless and traditional urns, or you can get creative. Want some inspiration? Keep reading.

You can easily add ashes to an existing planter to act as fertilizer for any kind of plant, be it a young tree, bush or flower. Mix the ashes in with the soil and as the plant grows it will draw nutrients from the ashes to grow big and beautiful. Use a hollowed-out book, too! Hollowed out books aren’t just for hiding secrets or stolen money like in the movies. You can order a custom-made false book or hollow out the deceased’s favorite yourself using a knife and a bit of elbow-grease. Place the ashes inside in a bag and seal the book with glue.

Stuffed animal urns are most commonly made for children that have passed away. The stuffed animal is cut in a small opening, the bagged ashes are placed inside, and the animal is resewn. You can also choose almost any kind of instrument, carve out a hollow, and seal some of the cremated remains inside. Brass instruments, guitars and basses are best suited. You can also create memorial jewelry. It can be very comforting after a losing a loved one to keep the ashes close. Memorial jewelry allows you to do just that. Create any kind of jewelry piece from a pendant to a ring with the ashes. The pieces can be made from stainless steel, platinum, bronze, or many other kinds of metals. Use an empty coffee can from the deceased’s favorite brand. This could also work with a tea can or box.

Turn an everyday ornament into an urn. A holiday ornament urn is basically just a mini urn that can hang on a Christmas tree. The ornament is too small to hold all the cremated remains, so it’s a good opportunity to make several ornaments for all the family to have. Perfect for deceased beer lovers, beer growler urns can be custom ordered from most craft breweries. In some instances, you can order a growler with the label listing the deceased’s name. Think of your lost loved one every time the wind blows. Order a custom wind chime urn online and hang it on a porch, in a yard, or in a window. You can even choose what kind of chime you want, like an alto or soprano. If the deceased loved fishing, commemorate him or her in a sealed tackle box. Be sure to keep it in a safe place, but don’t forget to bring it out on the water with you the next time you go.

funeral home in Monroeville, PA

Patrick T. Lanigan Funeral Home and Crematory, Inc. is here to help if you want to learn more about your options for cremation urns for after a cremation at a Monroeville, PA funeral home. Please stop by and visit us or give us a call today for more information on what we can do for you in your time of loss.

cremation service in Penn Township, PA

How to Customize Memorial Services

Do you know how important a personalized memorial can be? Studies show that the more personalized and memorable a memorial service is the more it helps not only honor the deceased but also offer some relief for the bereaved during their time of loss. There are lots of ways you can customize a memorial service to honor and remember the deceased after a cremation service in Penn Township, PA. Use this list of ideas to help inspire you to make a custom memorial after a cremation:

  1. Put Out Special Food – Food is a serious comfort for a lot of people. Take inspiration from the deceased’s favorite foods and put out a special spread for guests at the service.
  2. Add Decorations – It might seem like bad form to decorate a memorial service after a cremation, but decorations can actually make the service more special and unique. You can add decorations in any form you want, from lamps and rugs to artwork, flowers and everything in between. Bring decorations that somehow represent or honor the deceased. For example, if she loved to stitch, you could hang some of her work. Or if he loved a certain artist you could display copies of famous artwork.
  3. Set Up a Memory Table or Stations – A memory table is an easy way to help make a memorial service custom and personalized. It’s a simple and free way to show items that either meant a lot to the deceased, show their personality, or represent the deceased to other people. You can put almost anything on a memory table such as photos, sunglasses, ticket stubs from special events, letters, favorite vases or flowers, beloved clothing, or anything else that was special to or about the deceased. You can also make several memory stations as opposed to just one table. There can be themed tables with each one showing a part of the deceased’s life, such as wedding memories, school items, and children and grandchildren.
  4. Share Photos and Videos – Many bereaved families make photo collages or montage videos for a memorial service. These items are treasured by the family, but other bereaved like friends and coworkers would appreciate access to them as well. Consider uploading any montages or videos online to share with other people. You can use Google Drive, Drop Box, or YouTube. Make the files accessible with only a certain link and print the link on the service program so guests can access it if they choose.

These ideas are just a few of the many, many ways that you can make a memorial after a cremation service unique and meaningful to help ease the pain of loss and honor the deceased. If you need more ideas, look to the deceased for inspiration from his or her life.

Patrick T. Lanigan Funeral Home and Crematory, Inc. is here to help if you want to learn more about Penn Township, PA cremation services. We offer expert cremation services designed to help you during your time of loss. Please give us a call today for more information about what we can do for you.

funeral home in Penn Township, PA

All About Flowers and Funeral Homes

Do you know which flowers you should bring to a funeral home in Penn Township, PA? Bringing flowers to a funeral is a long-standing tradition that means a lot to most people. However, many people don’t know where to start when it comes to choosing the flowers they should bring to a funeral.

It’s important to learn more about the different kinds of traditional funeral flowers so you can put a bit of thought into your purchase, as each one represents or means something different.

  1. Mums – Chrysanthemums, or mums, are the exclusive funeral flower in Europe and many parts of Asia as they are believed to represent grief and truth while also the uplifting celebration of the deceased’s life.
  2. Carnations – Carnations are a common funeral flower because, like roses, they mean different things based on color. Red carnations mean affection, pink remembrance and white innocence.
  3. Hydrangeas – While hydrangeas don’t have a known meaning or representation, they are an incredibly beautiful and popular funeral flower. Some people like to think of them as a flower of thanks or understanding as they are easy to maintain and bloom for many years when cared for well.
  4. Roses – Roses have a lot of different meanings depending on their color. For example, pink roses are all about grace, friendly love and appreciation while red roses are for romantic love, courage and respect. Yellow roses, on the other hand, are for friendship.
  5. Orchids – Orchids signify lasting, eternal love as they live for much longer than the average potted flower.
  6. Lilies – Lilies are the most traditional funeral flower as the signify innocence and peace. Many people believe that lilies help give peace to the soul of the deceased.
  7. Tulips and Daffodils – Both of these sunny spring flowers represent fresh starts and renewals. They are usually sent to bring cheer to someone in grief. Yellow tulips signify cheerfulness while white tulips signify forgiveness.

In most cases, the bereaved won’t have much of a preference over what kind of flowers people bring. After all, they’re going through a loss and will be busy dealing with the ins and outs of the funeral. However, that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t put thought or effort into the flowers, especially since it’s the thought that really counts in these kinds of situations.

Bringing flowers shows that you care, and that you are thinking about the bereaved in their difficult time. Use your heart when choosing which kind of flowers you want to bring, as its really the thought that counts. No matter which you choose, the bereaved will greatly appreciate the sentiment. These are just a few of the many different kinds of flowers that are common for funeral homes, so feel free to choose what you feel is best.

funeral home in Penn Township, PA

Flowers and funeral homes have always gone hand in hand. Patrick T. Lanigan Funeral Home and Crematory, Inc. is here to help if you want more information on funeral flowers or on Penn Township, PA funeral homes. Stop by and visit us or give us a call today to learn more.

Cremation services in North Versailles, PA

Columbarium and Mausoleums

From variations in the cremation service itself to the cremains disposal, there are lots of choices to make. Cremation services in North Versailles, PA and beyond offer bereaved tons of different options. Many people choose to inter the remains in the ground or in a permanent above ground resting place such as a columbarium. Or is it a mausoleum? Do you know the difference? Keep reading to find out the answers and some interesting history.

According to the National Funeral Directors Association, a mausoleum is defined as, “a building designed for above-ground placement of a casket. The casket is placed into a crypt that may be designed for one or two persons.” If you’ve ever been walking in, through or past a cemetery, you’ve most likely noticed the ornate but small buildings scattered around the grounds amidst the tombstones. These buildings are mausoleums, columbarium, or even a combination of the two. Mausoleums can have one crypt, or a chamber designed to hold one body, or a larger space made to hold a few people like a family or a couple. Some mausoleums have more than one room for different parts of a family. These buildings are often decorated with exterior markers to denote who is resting inside. Some even have glass windows that allow those on the outside to view the coffins.

Mausoleums can be found in different variations and designs all around the world. One of the original Seven Wonders of the World was a mausoleum! Built in 353 BC near what is now known as Turkey, The Mausoleum of Halicarnassus was the final resting place of a famous Persian king named Mausolus. This king was so rich that he commissioned one of the finest mausoleums ever built and is actually how the term mausoleum was coined.

Both columbarium and mausoleums are defined as permanent, above ground resting places for human remains, but they have a few key differences between them. Unlike mausoleums that generally hold bodies, columbarium are designed to house cremated remains. The term columbarium comes from the Latin word “columba” which means dove.

In the past, doves and pigeons were housed in buildings with niches on the walls for their nests. This design is very similar to how columbarium are made, as they have compartments built into the walls to house and display cremation urns. There are lots of different columbarium designs. Some are indoor and some are outside, while others are simple and more still are decorated and elaborate. You can choose whatever kind of columbarium you like for your lost loved one.

Cremation services in North Versailles, PA

Do you have more questions about your options for after a cremation service, or would you like to learn more about North Versailles, PA cremation services in general? You can count on Patrick T. Lanigan Funeral Home and Crematory, Inc. for accurate and helpful information. Please stop by and see us in person or give us a call for more information on what we can do for you in your time of loss.

funeral homes in North Versailles, PA

Navigating Funeral Homes Around the Holidays

Many families face loss at the holidays at funeral homes in North Versailles, PA, be it a recent loss or an anniversary of a past death. While the holidays are traditionally a time of being with loved ones and celebrating, life doesn’t always work out that way.

Though losing a loved one around the holidays is tough, there are ways to make a holiday visit to a funeral home much easier. Use these ideas for inspiration to make a holiday funeral or memorial service successful, meaningful and healing:

  • Set Aside Time for Grief – The holidays are traditionally about celebration and happiness, so it’s important to set aside time for grief. Whether this grieving time is at the funeral home or memorial service, or if it is a more private or informal moment at home or with family, it’s a good idea to make it know that it’s OK to be sad and grieve even during the holidays. You can observe a moment of silence, share memories of the deceased, or just spend a few simple moments remembering.
  • Give Back – Giving back to your community is a great way to celebrate the season as well as turn your grief and loss into something positive. Grief can make you feel helpless, so doing community service or volunteering can bring back a feeling of control and positivity. There are tons of ways to volunteer around the holidays. Try caroling at a local retirement home, write notes to troops serving oversees, or host a toy drive for underprivileged kids.
  • Continue the Spirit of the Season – Celebrating and remembering a lost loved one doesn’t have to end at the funeral home, even during the holidays. There are lots of ways bereaved can continue the spirit of the season and remembering the deceased at home, such as setting up a vase of the deceased’s favorite flowers, leaving an empty chair at the table, having a moment of silence before a meal, or putting up a special ornament on the tree.
  • Add Personal Touches – Make a holiday funeral or memorial service more meaningful and personal by adding personal touches. You can send everyone home with fresh baked holiday cookies, hang up festive decorations, sing seasonal songs, or take a moment to acknowledge the season.
  • Invite your community – Open the service to those from the community that knew the deceased or might want to offer support to the bereaved. Use various methods to promote the service and make it know that its open to the community. You can post on social media, post flyers or make calls. An open service fosters seasonal goodwill and allows everyone that was touched by the deceased to acknowledge their loss and pay their respects.

funeral homes in North Versailles, PA

Want to learn more about dealing with loss around the holidays, or do you have questions about North Versailles, PA funeral homes in general? Patrick T. Lanigan Funeral Home and Crematory, Inc.is here to help. Please pay us a visit at or give us a call today.