Monthly Archives: May 2019

funeral homes in Sterling Heights, MI

Death and Social Media

Before loved ones who have died are transported to funeral homes in Sterling Heights, MI, it is highly likely that their deaths are already made public on social media. While mourning the death of someone we love and expressing grief in this kind of public venue has become more common, there are still some guidelines that should be followed to show respect and honor to the memory of the deceased and to their grieving families.

Although social media is designed to feel like a collective experience, if we are not the family who’s experienced the death of a loved one for whom they are grieving, we should be mindful of how we express our own grief and how we interact with them and what we post about them and their loved one.

One of the guidelines that we should follow is not to post anything about the death until the family, if they choose to, posts about it first. However, the family who has lost a loved one should let other family members and close friends know about the death by phone or email before posting it online. It can be quite shocking to get the initial news about a family member or close friend via Twitter or Facebook, and it is generally considered poor taste that family members and close friends hear about the death of someone they care about in this manner.

If the family of the deceased chooses not to post anything about the death on social media, then no one else should either. Some people handle death and grief very privately, and we show them and their loved one respect by honoring that privacy.

Another guideline regarding death and social media is not to slam the grieving family with posts and messages, and don’t expect personal replies to messages.

As much as much we humans avoid death for ourselves, we have a morbid curiosity about the details of the deaths of other people. It is in very poor taste to ask the grieving family for details about how their loved one died. With overdose deaths and suicides on the increase in America, this invasion of privacy can cause even more grief and suffering for the family.

The family is emotionally overwhelmed and they have many details to attend to regarding the death itself, so finding the time or the energy to answer messages will be impossible. It is, however, okay to post or send a brief message of condolence and support. The family, although they will not be able to respond to each one personally, will appreciate your care and concern.

A third guideline is to be circumspect about photos and selfies. It is not appropriate to take photos of funerals or selfies at funerals and post them online. The family of the deceased may choose to post select photos online, but they are the only ones, from a decorum aspect, who can do this. Anything else is disrespectful to the bereaved family and their loved one.

Finally, some families choose to leave their loved one’s social media accounts active after they die. Facebook turns these into memorial pages at some indeterminate point based on the data from posts that says the person died.

Sometimes families will leave the social media accounts open as a way to help them through the grieving process. If you choose to post on the deceased’s account, consider who will read your posts. If you send a private message (PM), only the person in their family who is monitoring the account will be able to read it. However, if you post it directly to the account, anyone who can see the account will be able to read it.

For more social media and death guidelines from funeral homes in Sterling Heights, MI, our compassionate and experienced staff at Lee-Ellena Funeral Home can help. You can come by our funeral home at 46530 Romeo Plank Rd., Macomb, MI, 48044 or you can contact us today at (586) 412-8999.

cremations services in Washington Township, MI

Historical Memorial Monuments

Procuring memorial monuments is one the cremations services in Washington Township, MI that people use after cremations. A memorial monument can be used at a grave where cremains are buried or in an urn garden.

As the rural cemetery movement spread during the 19th century in America, cemeteries became the first public parks. They were designed to be places of beauty and art where people could gather for outings or to stroll through the spacious, well-maintained grounds. As a result, there are many beautiful memorial monuments in cemeteries across the United States.

One of these is the Taylor Monument at Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Glendale, CA. The eye-catching sculpture that sits on top of the graves of J. Hartley and Nettie Barbara Taylor shows a man with a bow who is protecting a woman and a child from danger.

The Angel of Death Victorious (also known as the Haserot Angel) at the Lake View Cemetery in Cleveland, OH sits on top of the family tomb of Frances Haserot, a very financially-successful merchant. It was created by Herman Matzen in 1923. A winged angel was a common symbol of death for funeral sculptures throughout the 1800’s and into the early part of the 1900’s. As time has oxidized the bronze in the sculpture, it has left the effect that the angel is weeping.

President Chester A. Arthur died from a massive cerebral hemorrhage, two years after leaving office, at the age of 57. He was buried with his wife, Ellen, who died from pneumonia in 1860, and whom President Arthur mourned the rest of his life. Ellen’s grave at the Albany Rural Cemetery in Menands, NY was adorned with an almost life-sized Angel of Sorrow, who appears to be shrouding the grave.

The headstone covering the Luyties family grave at Bellefontaine Cemetery in St. Louis, MO is also known as “the girl in the shadow box.” A bigger-than-life granite arch, with decorative scupting, contains a woman inside, appearing to look down onto the grave. Herman Luyties fell in love with one of the models of an Italian sculpture and commissioned the memorial stone in her honor. He proposed to her, but she declined. Luyties, still in love, had the memorial stone shipped to St. Louis, where he kept it in his home. In time, Luyties had the memorial stone moved to the family grave. He encased it in glass to protect the woman he loved from the elements. When he died at the age of 50, Luyties was buried at her feet.

The Elks Tumulus (French for burial mound) is located at the Greenwood Cemetery in New Orleans, LA. This is not only an unusual grave monument, but it is also an unusual grave. The mausoleum, which has a sculpture of an elk standing on top of it to watch over those inside, is a final resting place for a national fraternal society known as the Benevolent and Protective Order of the Elks. The entrance door has a clock that is permanent set to 11:00, which is the Hour of Recollection among Elks, a time when they toast the memory of friends who are not there.

For additional information about cremations services in Washington Township, MI, our caring and knowledgeable staff at Lee-Ellena Funeral Home is here to assist you. You can visit our funeral home at 46530 Romeo Plank Rd., Macomb, MI 48044, or you can call us today at (586) 412-8999.

funeral homes in Warren, MI

Celebrity Funeral Songs

An important part of funeral services at funeral homes in Warren, MI is the music that is chosen and played to honor and pay tribute to the deceased. While there are usually some similarities in the songs that are chosen, there is almost always one or two songs that belong specifically to the deceased and their life.

Celebrities are no different. Many choose traditional funeral music, but almost all of them add an unusual twist that belongs to them.

When Whitney Houston’s funeral was held at the New Hope Baptist Church, where Houston got her singing chops, in Newark, NJ, the church was surrounded by thousands of fans and admirers who wanted to pay their respects to the later singer.

Houston’s funeral songs included the Sam Cooke classic, “A Change is Gonna Come,” “I Really Miss You,” and “Ribbons in the Sky.” As Houston’s coffin was carried outside the church, her own best-selling version of the Dolly Parton song, “I Will Always Love You,” played to underscore the bittersweet poignancy of her untimely death.

Actress Carrie Fisher died of cardiac arrest in 2016. Fisher’s memorial service was held in her living room, with Meryl Streep leading the 125 mourners (including George Lucas, Meg Ryan, Richard Dreyfuss, Tracey Ullman, and Gwenyth Paltrow) in singing. The final song they sang was the 1930 hit, “Happy Days are Here Again,” which was Fisher’s favorite song.

When actress Elizabeth Taylor died in 2011, she, according to her wishes, arrived fashionably late – 15 minutes – to her own funeral. With a handful of family and friends present, Taylor’s funeral service included “Amazing Grace” played on a trumpet by her grandson, Rhys Tivey. When a private memorial service for Taylor was held later, Elton John paid tribute to her with his song, “Blue Eyes.”

Beau Biden, son of former Vice-President Joe Biden, died from brain cancer in 2015. The music selections ranged from classic hymns – “Ave Maria,” “Amazing Grace,” and “Be Not Afraid” – to Broadway hits – “Bring Him Home” from Les Miserables – to contemporary rock – “Til Kingdom Come,” performed live by Coldplay’s lead singer, Chris Martin. The last song played at Biden’s funeral was fitting for the former Army officer: “The Battle Hymn of the Republic.”

Country music legend George Jones died in 2013. One of country music’s original bad boys, Jones left a musical legacy that still ripples through alternative rock and country music, as well as pop country and rock music. Since music was Jones’ life, it’s no surprise that music took center stage at his funeral.

Patty Loveless and Vince Gill performed “Go Rest High on That Mountain,” while Randy Travis sang “Amazing Grace.” But the final song was one of Jones’ most famous and well-known hits, “He Stopped Loving Her Today,” performed by Alan Jackson.

When musician Prince died in 2016, he was cremated and a private memorial service was held at Paisley Park, Prince’s famous estate. Prince, unknown to most people, was a devout member of the Jehovah’s Witness church. A later memorial occurred at Prince’s regular place of worship, the Kingdom Hall in Minnetonka, Minnesota.

The music performed were the hymns, “He Will Call” and “See Yourself When All is New.” Lyrics from Prince’s song, “Beautiful, Blessed, and Loved” were included in the memorial program for his service.

For music ideas for funeral services at funeral homes in Warren, MI, talk with our compassionate and experienced staff at Lee-Ellena Funeral Home. You can come by our funeral home at 46530 Romeo Plank Rd., Macomb, MI, 48044 or you can contact us today at (586) 412-8999.

Mount Clemens, MI cremations

Creative Ideas for Using Cremains

After Mount Clemens, MI cremations, cremains are returned to the deceased’s family to use as they wish. While some people may opt to buy a beautiful urn and keep the cremains in a prominent place in the family home, many people are interested in using the cremains to honor the memory of their loved one in a way that’s special and meaningful.

One way, of course, is to scatter the deceased’s cremains in a place that was special to them, or a place that held a particularly fond memory for the family. That place could be anywhere. It could be the deceased’s childhood home. It could be the place where marriage was proposed. It could be place that marked a memorable family vacation.

Another way to use cremains to creating a last memorial is to turn them into wearable jewelry that the family of the deceased can wear to keep their loved one close all the time.

Some of the more creative ways, though, to use cremains are interesting ideas that can keep loved ones memories alive in unique ways.

The cremains can be used to create a ceramic cups, bowls, candle holders, and other things that people use every day throughout their lives. It is a nice way to have a physical reminder of loved ones and it, in some way, allows them to be a continuous part of life going forward.

Cremains can also be turned into beautiful glass objects. While some of these glass memorials can be large, they are usually made into pebble-sized stones that can be given to family and friends so that each person can have a part of their loved one with them. These pebbles can also be left as a permanent part of the deceased’s favorite places, such as the beach, national parks, historical landmarks, or hiking trails.

One of the more popular and creative way to use cremains is to have them mixed with fireworks and then have a fireworks display to pay tribute to a loved one’s memories. There are companies who specifically create fireworks with cremains mixed in and then produce and run the fireworks show where friends and family gather to say their final farewells.

If the deceased loved to hunt or go to the firing range, there are companies that will make shotgun shells that contain part of their cremains. Some of these companies offer discounts to active and retired military members as well as law enforcement personnel.

If the deceased loved the ocean or was ecology-minded, some of the cremains can be mixed with concrete and laid on the bottom floor of the sea to become a new habitat for corals, which are becoming endangered, and other ocean life.

Another neat way to use the cremains of a loved one is make an hourglass urn out of them. There are companies that make these urns (which can be engraved with the deceased’s name, dates of birth and death, and an epithet). They provide specific instructions on how to fill them and use the hourglass to literally track time.

For more ideas for using cremains after Mount Clemens, MI cremations, our caring and knowledgeable staff at Lee-Ellena Funeral Home is here to assist you. You can visit our funeral home at 46530 Romeo Plank Rd., Macomb, MI 48044, or you can call us today at (586) 412-8999.