A: Cremation is simply a process of reducing the human body to particles and bone fragments using high heat and flame. It is not the final disposition of the cremated remains, nor is it a type of funeral service.

A: Depending on weight, cremation takes from two to three hours.

A: At the end of the cremation process, what remains are bone fragments. These bone fragments are then processed to a consistent size and placed into a temporary or permanent urn.

A: Cremated remains resemble coarse sand. They range in color from white to gray. The  cremated remains weigh between four and eight pounds.

A: Cypress Lawn Cremation Society offers a variety of beautiful and affordable urns.

Embalming is not required by law. If you choose arrangements that include viewing, embalming is the best method to ensure presentability of the person who died, and is recommended.

Many people wish to be present at the cremation, and because we operate our own facility, we can provide this service. Designated persons can be present when the deceased is placed into the cremation chamber, and, as is traditional in some cultures, may even press the button to begin the process.

Of course. Many families choose a traditional visitation and funeral service, followed by cremation. Or, the memorial service can be held after the process is complete. The service can be as formal or informal as you prefer, and as personalized as you like.

Some people still believe that if you choose cremation you cannot have a funeral. However, exactly the opposite is true. In fact, most people who choose cremation do arrange to have a funeral, followed by cremation. Grief counseling experts recommend that a funeral service or some service of remembrance be held, because it brings closure, offers an opportunity to say farewell, and helps to begin the healing process.

A viewing plays an important part in the funeral observance, because it helps people accept the fact that a death has occurred. It is one more way for family members to cope with their sense of loss, and to start recovering from it.
At Cypress Lawn, we provide a quiet, elegant atmosphere for this type of gathering, and you may hold it publicly or privately, depending entirely on your personal wishes. Either way, you have the opportunity to gather with friends for support and the sharing of memories, and to maintain personal connections with those you hold most dear.

A casket is not required, only a rigid, opaque container appropriate for transferring the person who has died into the crematory. This facilitates careful handling by our staff and protects the dignity of the person who has died. For viewing or a ceremony, you may want to choose a cremation casket of wood, available in many styles and price ranges.

Cremated remains are returned to the family in a basic urn. If permanent possession is desired or a memorial service is to be held after cremation, you may want to consider purchasing a different urn.
Urns come in many styles and reflect varied artistic forms. With so many to choose from, families can find something reflective of their lifestyle, faith or beliefs. Because the urn is an attractive art form, it is not uncommon for a family member or friend to retain the cremated remains as a cherished possession. But for many, a permanent placement at another location is more appropriate. Urn selection is often based on the needs and beliefs of the family and their plans for final disposition.

Scattering of cremated remains can represent a permanent oneness with an important place. Scattering in a river, lake or at sea, over mountains, farms, even golf courses is not uncommon provided a permit can be secured. Scattering is regulated by state law. We can advise you of any local ordinances prohibiting scattering and coordinate a scattering service for you if you wish. Many cemeteries offer “scattering gardens” with the added benefit of memorialization. A scattering urn is especially designed to hold the cremated remains until the scattering ceremony and as a memento or keepsake afterwards. Be sure to consult your clergy as some religions will permit cremation but not allow scattering.

Yes. Cypress Lawn offers either above-ground and in-ground burial, or preservation in a columbarium niche or mausoleum. Scattering in our special garden is a popular choice, as is scattering in a place that has special meaning. We specialize in helping you arrange this, and in securing a permit if necessary. Please ask us to explain all available choices.

The professional staff at Cypress Lawn will assist you and guide you through every step of the arrangement process. This includes planning services, explaining the many choices for commemoration, even helping with reservations and travel plans for your guests.

The cost of a Cypress Lawn funeral depends entirely on your personal preferences and the services you select, so the cost may be higher or lower than average. Cremation is normally less expensive than traditional burial, but the overall cost is determined by (1) the services you select (2) the way you personalize the service, and (3) any preplanning that you have done. Our funeral arrangers can discuss these costs with you in a detailed, straightforward manner.

Membership in the Cypress Lawn Cremation Society provides coverage for the state of California only, but additional coverage throughout the world can be obtained by adding our Optional Worldwide Coverage Plan.

For answers to all other cremation questions, call us at 650-550-8868.

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