The List

The checklist all of us will one day complete

Lists. They can be an organizer’s tool, a disorganized person’s crutch, a spouse’s bane. One thing about lists, they take a complex set of details and break them down into manageable steps that can be checked off. There is one list many ask me about but dread the day it is needed: What to do when a loved one dies? Well, here is a start:

NOTIFY: Funeral home, relatives, employers, insurance agents, religious support, lawyer, and accountant.

SECURE VITAL STATISTICS: Full legal name, address, parent’s names, date of birth, Social Security number, DD-214 and veteran paperwork, occupation and work details.

PAY FOR: Funeral services, cemetery services, other funeral related elements like obituaries, ministers, musicians.

DECIDE: Clothing for deceased to wear, burial or cremation, open or closed casket, public viewing or private, embalming, cemetery space, service details, which minister, pallbearers, music, casket, urn, vault, readings, flowers, military representation, memorials.

IF CREMATION: Viewing/service before cremation or after, type of urn, final placement of cremated remains, scattering, ground burial, niche placement, witness the cremation.



IF CASKET BURIAL: Church or graveside, cemetery, type of vault, cemetery tent, headstone.

And the list goes on… but this should give you a good starting point. Now imagine you could check things off this list before that awful day? That would be a wonderful opportunity and greatly appreciated by those who survive us! The truth is, you can, and it can be crucial to your loved ones’ ability to live, laugh and love during this time. I have the list, you have the answers. Get started today at home or better yet, let me show you how easy it is to check the items off and reduce the stress that day will ultimately bring.