The Burial Process: What You Should Know

tombstones at Weehawken Cemetery

The passage of a loved one is a very emotional time and all the decision-making involved can leave you confused, frustrated, and looking for answers. When making decisions for your loved one, you may need more information on the choices you have to make. Here is some information that can help you when choosing what is best for you and your loved one.

What is a Burial Vault?

A burial vault is an optional part of the burial process. Burial vaults encase the casket, protecting it from heavy machinery used in cemeteries, and of course, the earth above it. The benefits of a burial vault are that it prevents the casket from buckling due to the weight of the ground and decay. Burial vaults prevent the ground from sinking above the casket, keeping the grounds pristine for visitation.

What is Cremation?

Cremation in an alternative type of body disposal to coffins or caskets. After the remains are incinerated in a cremation chamber, what is left are the basic chemical compounds which include gases, ashes, and mineral fragments, otherwise known as cremains. The cremains are usually kept in an urn or special container. Some may choose to bury the ashes, while others keep the urns in their homes.

What is a Green Burial?

Green burials are an eco-friendly alternative to traditional burials. There are no chemicals involved, such as embalming fluids, and the body is placed in a biodegradable coffin or shroud without a concrete burial vault. The benefits of this type of burial are that it is a simple burial process, it can be less expensive than traditional burials, it preserves natural resources, it removes harmful chemicals, and it saves natural areas.

If you want to learn more about the information above or if you have any additional questions, please contact Louis Cicalese, Cemetery President and Trustee today.

Louis Cicalese, cemetery trustee in New Jersey is president of the board of the historic Harleigh Cemetery and serves as an advisor to a number of non-profit cemetery organizations in New Jersey.

What is a Green Burial?

louis cicalese cemetery land

With the current state that our planet is in, it is important to think about sustainability and our environmental impact in everything we do in life. However, it is also important to think about our environmental impact on our planet even after we pass away. With environmental consciousness becoming more and more common, people are starting to consider alternate burial options, such as green burials, instead of traditional types of burials.

Green Burial Details

With a green burial, the body does not require any chemicals, such as embalming fluids, and it is placed in a biodegradable coffin or shroud without a concrete burial vault. Burying the body in this way allows for complete decomposition and the natural return to soil.

The Benefits of a Green Burial

  1. Simplicity

Green burials that use a biodegradable coffin or shroud are very simple compared to traditional burials that require a large, heavy coffin. Those who like to keep things simple would prefer a green burial over a more traditional coffin.

  1. Less Expensive

The costs of embalming, caskets, and concrete vaults are not required for a green burial meaning that those costs are eliminated. Without these costs, families can save thousands of dollars.

  1. Preserving Natural Resources

Green burials use fewer natural resources than a traditional burial. Traditional burials require a large amount of hardwood, steel, copper, and concrete which very little, if any, is required for a green burial.

  1. Removes Harmful Chemicals

Embalming fluids contain formaldehyde which is a respiratory irritant and carcinogen. With green burials, this harmful chemical is eliminated from the burial process.

  1. Saving Natural Areas

Green cemeteries can help save natural habitats and do not require the elimination of trees.

All our cemetery locations provide the option of green burials. If you are interested in learning more about the burial services offered at Louis Cicalese cemeteries, you can contact us to learn more.