Ask Your Funeral Director - Is Embalming Required

By: Jason Meidl
Tuesday, June 15, 2021

By Jason Meidl, Funeral Director at Creston Valley Funeral Services

jason@crestonvalleyfuneralservices.ca

Kids say the most amazing things and at times the most inappropriate things and we love them for it. My children are no exception, and my 4-year-old comes up with the best one liners I have ever heard cross a persons mouth. One subject that is spoken a lot about in my household is … you guessed it death. My kids are amazingly comfortable with the idea of death and know exactly what my job is. Granted my 4 year old’s understanding is a little bit different than my 7 year old’s but that’s to be expected. One thing I have noticed lately is my youngest daughter’s fascination with business cards and to be specific mine. She has formed this new habit of making sure people know that I have a business card and its for a funeral home. This in itself is harmless until we are in a grocery store chatting with and elderly couple that we have known for years and she looks up with her serious face and says to the couple, “Did you know my Dad has a business card and its for his funeral home, and if you need his help you just call him and he will be right over.” Thankfully coming from this sweet little girl, it was taken by our friends the right way. Kids will say the darndest things.

“Is Embalming required and what is it?” Doug

In the province of BC there is no legal requirement for someone to be embalmed. There are definitely times that as a funeral director and embalmer that I would recommend embalming, i.e. delayed time from time of death until visitation, traumatic deaths, contagious diseases to name a few. At these times I would give my professional opinion whether I felt embalming would be beneficial, and as well there is a cost associated with embalming so I would want to make sure the family is aware of this. Embalming itself is the treatment of a deceased individual to temporarily preserve and slow down decomposition using embalming chemicals that for the most part contain formaldehyde, glutaraldehyde, ethanol, humectants, and other wetting agents. The three main reasons for embalming are temporary preservation, restoration and presentation, and sanitation. There is a place for embalming but its not necessarily for everyone and you should never be told that you have to embalm your loved one. I have seen in my career viewings that were only made possible because of embalming and seeing how important it was to these families that this happened.

“Are you locally owned?” Frank

This is a question we have gotten a lot since we opened. We are locally owned and operated, the funeral home is owned by the Meidl and Kemle family all of whom are located here in Creston.

Interesting Fact

Obituaries for the common person did not become commonplace until the 20th century. Throughout history funerals, obituaries, or published death notices for public figures was commonplace. There is evidence of obituaries from the 1600’s and it was customary for public figures to have their deaths announced to the community or even to the whole country. It was not until the 20th century that obituaries for non-prolific individuals became commonplace. These were often announced in the local paper, giving the date of death and the details of the funeral. This is something that is still done today, as well as the use of online methods through social media, to publicly announce a death. 

 

Keep the questions coming! Email me at jason@crestonvalleyfuneralservices.ca

 

 

 

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