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Funeral Q&A

Funerals. You've got questions? I'll give you answers.

I'm a funeral director/embalmer at the Norwich and Montville Funeral Home of Church and Allen.  It always seems like there's a list of questions people have for me once they find out what I do.  Many ask me the same question time and time again so I figure I'd like to answer those questions publicly so more people can get answers to their questions and benefit from this knowledge.

Additionally, I will occasionally post tips, little known facts on some of the following topics:

  • Burial versus Cremation: Cost difference, religious implication, common misperceptions
  • Veteran Benefits:  What our veterans are entitled to and where to get more info.
  • Pre-arranging and the benefits of doing so:  How it protects you and helps make your wishes known to your family.

And of course, I will try to tactfully answer your questions.  Of course if they are of a personal nature, please contact me directly for assistance.

I hope you enjoy this opportunity.

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Katie Ryan O'Connor May 01, 2012 at 04:55 PM
Hi Mark, Welcome! I look forward to reading.
Paul May 01, 2012 at 08:46 PM
Hey Mark, This aught to be interesting :)
Elissa Bass May 03, 2012 at 10:20 AM
Here's a question I have - how do you handle it when surviving family members choose to completely ignore the deceased's last wishes? For example, the deceased leaves it in writing to be buried in a certain cemetery but the surviving spouse doesn't want to do that, and just ignores that wish.
Mark Grader May 03, 2012 at 04:14 PM
Hi Mark, Welcome to Montville Patch!
Mark T. Kalinowski May 08, 2012 at 12:30 PM
This is actually one of my topics I'll be writing about in more detail but here's an answer I hope will help you. In Connecticut there is a direct line of kindred (family members) in a particular order that gets left in charge of final arrangements at the time of someone's death. For example, surviving spouse comes first, if none then on to children of the deceased although they all get "equal" say legally that can become a bee's nest at times. Leaving your wishes in your will for funeral/burial/cremation usually doesn't help much because the funeral services are typically completed before a will is read. So here's what I recommend. The state of Connecticut allows you to designate a person along with a back-up person ahead of time while you are still alive. Of course you would select someone you feel confident would handle your arrangements as you wish. You would have that form signed by all parties involved, notarized, and the original is retained by the funeral home and copies given to any other interested parties ahead of time. Additionally, making a pre-need at your funeral home will make those plans financially stable so those you designate (with their consent obviously) won't be financially burdened. I hope this helps. If you want more info or if I can be of further assistance, please feel free to contact me. Mark.Kalinowski@Dignitymemorial.com

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