Article Title: Answering Questions About Cremation

Date Published: October 9, 2017 by Vilonia Funeral Home


What Is Cremation?

Cremation is the reduction of human remains to large bone fragments (skeletal remains) by intense heat usually between 1,600 – 1,800 degrees Fahrenheit. After the cremation process is complete, usually 2 ½ to 3 ½ hours, the remaining bone fragments are then cooled down. After the cool down process, any non-combustible items such as bridgework, materials from the casket or container, such as hinges, latches, nails, etc. are separated and removed from the remains.  The  bone fragments are then pulverized to be reduced to what we call cremated remains (commonly referred to as ashes by the general public).

 What Happens Before The Cremation Process?

In the State of Arkansas, before a cremation can begin, the legal next of kin must sign a cremation authorization form. The funeral director must obtain a signed copy of the death certificate, and must obtain a burial transit permit signed by the county registrar.

 Before the cremation begins, the deceased is identified by the family or funeral director, the deceased is given a cremation identification number and tag that abides with the body and assigned paperwork of the deceased until the cremation is complete. The identification number and tag is returned with the cremated remains.

 Before entering the cremation chamber, the deceased is checked for a pacemaker, prosthesis, mechanical, or radioactive devices that may harm the crematory. These devices are removed prior to the cremation as they can be harmful to the crematory.

 What Is Direct Cremation?

Direct Cremation is cremation immediately, or as soon as possible after death without any viewing, services, or rites. This is the least expensive form of cremation.

 What Is An Alternative Container?

The law requires that a deceased person being cremated be placed in some type of container prior to and during the cremation process. This can be a wooden casket designed especially for cremation, commonly referred to a cremation casket. It can also be a corrugated cardboard container, which is the minimum alternative container that used to encase the body during cremation. There are a variety of alternative containers and styles. Some alternative containers are suitable for someone wanting to have a viewing prior to the remains. These alternative containers are usually lined with decorated crepe interior to cosmetically appeal to those viewing the deceased.

 What Is A Rental Casket?

A rental casket is a casket with an alternative container on the inside. Usually the foot end of the casket opens up where the alternative container can be removed, or replaced. The body really never touches the casket, but is placed in the alternative container (referred to as a rental insert).

The casket is basically a shell made out of wood, or metal. After the visitation or funeral ceremony is complete, the rental insert encasing the body is removed and transported to the crematory. The rental casket is then stored until needed for future use.


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