FuneralResources.com and MemorialTechnology.com Offer COVID-19 Families New Funeral and Memorial Technology Tools
COVID-19 Families Face Funeral Planning Challenges
In response to the overwhelming number of families losing loved ones to the COVID-19 pandemic, Funeral Resources.com and MemorialTechnology.com provide COVID-19 families with the awareness, education, and access to some of the funeral industry’s newest and most innovative memorial technology tools.
Chris Hill, Founder says; “With a national shutdown in place, COVID-19 families and the death care industry are both facing the most devastating funeral planning challenges in the history. Not only are there extreme limitations on accessing traditional funeral planning needs like funerals, visitations, wakes, memorial services, but to make matters worse, lots of stress and pressure to afford the significant costs and expenses of losing a loved one.”
COVID-19 Families Have Much-Needed Help and Hope
Not only is there an abundance of free information, answers, and support available at these family-focused online resource centers for COVID-19 families, but also access to new memorial technology tools.
Memorial Reefs – Green Burials at sea offer an underwater living legacy
“After losing a loved one, my loss became an inspiration to help families make these difficult situations easier. Given the COVID-19 crisis facing families today, we felt compelled to serve as the hands and feet of Christ. We knew God was calling us to find a way to come together and do something special…at a time when families need it most”, explains Christopher P. Hill, Founder.
Top Six Memorial Technology Tools to Remember a Loved One
Like me and many other families who have lost a loved one, I was unaware of many of the new, best, and most innovative memorial technology options available for helping families plan a funeral, burial, cremation, or even serve as an added value to their end of life planning.
Each of these wonderful new memorial technology tools allow families to remember their loved ones.
They also provide a much better opportunity for individuals and families to heal from the inevitable grief and loss associated from losing a loved one.
You can find more information about each of these six new memorial technology options by visiting the following extremely educational and FREE family-focused online resource center:
New Memorial Technology to Plan a Funeral
and Better Remember Loved Ones
MemorialTechnology.com is an online resource center designed to help families, Funeral Directors, and Cemetery Directors to learn more today’s new and creative ways to help cope with grief and loss and, most importantly, help celebrate the special life and memories of a loved one.
This family-friendly online resource center was specifically designed for three main purposes:
1. Raise awareness about today’s most popular, newest, and most innovative technology tools, all of which can help remember loved ones in a more meaningful way.
2. Offer valuable information and education on exactly how these new memorial technology tools work.
3. Provide access to the most qualified and credible companies offering these funeral home services.
MemorialTechnology.com features six of the most commonly sought-after and utilized memorial technology options families are choosing to add to their funeral, memorial, burial, or cremation planning. These six options include:
Unfortunately after my family lost a dear loved one, we were not aware that any these excellent memorial technology tools existed. Therefore, we did not know how they worked, nor did we know who to turn to for help.
My sincere hope and prayer is this helps families make a difficult situation a little easier.
MemorialTechnology.com Offers Families and Funeral Industry New Ways to Memorialize Loved Ones
Vienna, VA – The beginning of a New Year is always special for those who have lost loved ones, as well as the funeral and cemetery industries. However, 2012 is going to be particularly special because families can now take advantage of some of today’s new and innovative memorial technology and memorial services options.
Christopher P. Hill, Founder of FuneralResources.com, recalls “When my family and I lost my mother on Thanksgiving Day, we never knew these new memorial options existed. I can assure you we would have used at least three of these memorial tools.”
Hill’s personal loss inspired him to create www.memorialtechnology.com, a new educational website which simply makes it easier for families and Funeral Directors to raise awareness, education, and access to these new ways to better heal and remember.
MemorialTechnology.com particularly helps the funeral and cemetery industry by offering Funeral and Cemetery Directors a quick and easy way to educate every family on excellent additions to their funeral and memorial services planning.
Top Six New Funeral and Memorial Technology Options
MemorialTechnology.com contains six options that studies show most families are choosing to add to their funeral, memorial, or cremation planning:
View This Brief Video Which Explains Today’s New Memorial Technology Options:
As we approach the New Year, Hill stated; “You will see that MemorialTechnology.com provides a true win-win situation. For the Funeral and Cemetery Directors, they can now offer even more valuable services. For the families, the can learn and maybe take advantage of ways to enhance and improved a loved one’s life tribute. I hope my mother is proud to know she inspired such a wonderful opportunity.”
FuneralResources.com is the funeral industry’s leading online Resource Center for both families and Funeral Directors. This comprehensive website offers easy access to help regarding how to plan a funeral, memorial services, and end of life plan services.
Grave Headstone, Tombstones and Monuments Memorial
What to Put on a Grave Headstone, Monuments,
Grave Marker, or Personalized Memorial?
Losing a loved one is hard. Honoring that loved one after they are gone can be just as hard. The first step is choosing what to say on the memorial for a grave headstone, grave marker, or any other type of monuments.
What Do You Want to Say About Your Loved One?
You could mention their time served in the military or their relationships to the family. You could incorporate some of their favorite hobbies or passions. Over the years we’ve seen a lot of memorable quotes and sayings.
Here are just a few that you might use as inspiration:
“An officer and gentleman, he touched the lives of many with a hug, a smile, humor, and a generous spirit. Rest, my dear father, in God’s loving embrace.” ~ Donna Shackelford Jones
“Grieve not, nor speak of me with tears, but laugh and talk of me as if I were beside you there.” ~ Isla Paschal Richardson
“What we have once enjoyed we can never lose. All that we love deeply becomes a part of us.” ~ Helen Keller
When choosing a saying, you might ask yourself, would your loved one like this and does it reflect their impact on the world?
What are Your Options When Designing a Memorial?
Once the text is chosen, you’ll need to consider the design. There are numerous options for engraving and designing a custom headstone or marker. Elements like font size and color greatly impact the design of the memorial. If you’re working with a custom headstone designer, you’ll want to defer to them for the best font choice. Your designer will also be able to determine the best layout so everything is easy to read and well balanced.
There are also other options when choosing a custom headstone or memorial. For instance, do you want to have a vase, religious symbol, or even a picture on the monument? These questions should be brought up with your funeral director and cemetery coordinator. To keep track of these answers you might want to download the Cemetery Regulations Checklist, put together by Quiring Monuments.
Remember to keep in mind the purpose of the memorial, whether it’s a grave headstone, grave marker, cremation memorial, or any other type of personalized monuments, it should represent your lost loved one and be a place for the family to remember them fondly.
The Powerful Combination of Custom Crafted Funeral Music, Pictures, and Professional Video
Creating a Healing Thanksgiving Family Keepsake
With the rapid growth in the Internet and new funeral technology, families today have access to many new and innovative tools that can help significantly increase their funeral and memorial planning experience. At the top of this list are DVD Video Tributes, which most families are choosing as a common addition to their loved ones memorial service.
In addition, I am happy tell everyone there is also the ability to work with a professional singer/songwriter/producer who can help families create “custom crafted” funeral music, which is a song that is personalized for either a special loved one and/or a special event.
Listen to this Beautiful Custom Crafted Song:
“Since my family never knew this powerful funeral technology existed, I strongly encourage every family to learn more about this option as a great addition to a Memorial Service. These professionally designed Video Tributes allow you to combine the personalized music, photos, and message of your choice. Watching this together with loved ones, this provides a great opportunity for everyone to celebrate, remember, and heal…and ultimately becomes a treasured family heirloom to keep forever.”
Christopher P. Hill, Founder, FuneralResources.com
Consider Using Custom Crafted Songs to Help Heal and Remember
If you are interested in selecting funeral songs with meaningful lyrics it may be easy to use the internet to search and read lyrics of popular songs. However, I believe a much better and more personal solution is to opt for a more customized music selection and have a song written and recorded to play at the funeral service or memorial service.
This DVD Video Tribute below contains a customized song that was created for me by Anna Huckabee of Custom Crafted Songs. By taking advantage of creating a custom crafted song, this helped me to express how I truly felt about my mother, but in a very special and meaningful way.
By combining these personalized lyrics that Anna helped me create with a DVD Video Tribute, this helped me in so many ways. First, it helped me to better see what a wonderful and amazing person she really was. Second, since Anna needed to ask many questions to know as much as possible about her, this helped me to express my thoughts and discuss some things that significantly helped in my healing process. But most importantly, this custom crafted song allowed me to express some feelings and emotions that I was not able to say to her before she passed. These words are things that I regret every day not telling her before she was taken above.
My mother passed on Thanksgiving Day of 2008, which clearly means that Thanksgiving will never be the same. But since everyone who knew her would tell you she was one of the most giving people on the planet, I truly thank Anna for creating this personal song and tribute for my mother, and fittingly calling this beautiful song “Thanks For Giving“.
Thanks for your giving ways too Anna!
Top 5 Reasons Video Tributes are Common Memorial Options
1. A QualityMemorial Tribute
Each custom DVD Video Tribute is hand-crafted by professional technicians who artfully tell your loved one’s story. With expert direction, the funeral music and imagery join together in perfect harmony to create a healing experience as individual as your loved one’s life. This memorial tribute will be a treasured family heirloom for generations to come.
2. Restore Your Loved One’s Photos
Your precious photos are carefully restored, enhanced and artfully arranged by talented multimedia technicians. These experts can combine faded, tattered, torn, static snapshots into moving cinematic video, bringing your treasured photos to life forever.
3. Create a Fitting Video Memorial
From majestic mountains and oceans to the simplicity and beauty of a single rose, a Funeral Video DVD utilizes custom thematic scenery, filmed in stunning High Definition by world-renown videographers, designed to personalize and illustrate your loved ones life.
4. Healing and Uplifting Funeral Music
A professionally crafted DVD Video Tribute utilizes therapeutic, customized soundtracks. This personalized funeral music is specifically composed, arranged and/or produced to heal a broken heart as well as provide the perfect accompaniment to your family photos.
5. A Memorial as Individual As Your Loved One
These Video Tributes are professionally produced tributes which celebrate your loved ones life in magnificent cinematic quality, and are available in standard or wide-screen format.
New Memorial Tributes and Funeral Technology Options for Fathers
For those special Dad’s and Grandfathers who have passed and are dearly missed, creating a personalized and specialized memorial can provide an excellent opportunity to heal and remember.
Below is a list of some of the most popular memorial options that many families are choosing for a personalized and special memorial, tribute, keepsake, or family heirloom:
About New Funeral and Memorial Technology:
“Technology is changing the face of the funeral industry and baby boomers, those ages 43 to 62 are at the root of it“, says John Reed, president of the National Funeral Directors Association based in Brookfield, Wis.
Today many new and innovative technologies are widely recognized in the funeral industry as common services that help make a difficult situation a little easier. Boomers are memorializing their parents and loved ones in nontraditional ways and using new funeral technology to do it.
Technology is opening the doors to unique memorial ideas and expanding funeral planning and memorial service options. With these tech-savvy Baby Boomers wanting to take the negativity out of funerals and find ways to celebrate a person’s life, using new funeral technology such as some of these listed below are among the most popular, common, and rapidly growing.
Keep in mind that these gifts can serve as an excellent family tribute, keepsake, or family heirloom. The main benefit from these gifts is that, although in different way, each of them offers a wonderful opportunity to honor and celebrate your Dad, as well as share many of the great stories and memories you shared together.
The original Rosetta Stone helped translate the pictorial language of the ancient Egyptians, providing definitions of the imagery and bringing to life a long-gone culture. Now one company is offering personal versions of the stones to tell stories about an individual long after we’re gone.
Objecs LLC’s RosettaStone is an oblong — think full-sized iPod – piece of granite or travertine stone inscribed with pictorial images that stand for different aspects of an individual’s life. Seemlessly incorporated into tombstones and monuments, the stones invite cemetery visitors to plug into a website – or in some cases simply wave your phone in front of the stone – and see the meaning of each symbol.
“Walk around a cemetery today and gravestones doesn’t tell you anything. Date of birth. Date of death. They’re cold and impersonal,” said Chris Hill, a financial advisor in northern Virginia and also Founder of FuneralResources.com, who personally owns two RosettaStones. “This will tell my story for thousands of years.”
Purchasers can choose up to six tablet symbols, reminiscent of hieroglyphics, from more than 300 options, including a striped pole for a barber, a caliper for an engineer, and a man behind bars for ne’er-do-wells who want to be remembered as such.
When selecting the symbols for his stone, Hill thought of his wife and two children, his passions for music and writing, his belief that life doesn’t end with death.
For his six symbols, he chose an “I” for general information, a U.S. map, stick figures representing a family, a music note, a hand holding a pen, and a telescope looking into space.
“It’s just as important to document your life as it is to remember it”, Hill said.
John Bottorff, founder of Objecs LLC, said the tablet symbols spur interest and conversation.
“When I see someone using a symbol I can relate to, I can’t help but be curious as to their life experience around it. We are seeing mini-meaning of life stuff here from common people, not a Dalai Lama,” Bottorff said. “I will never look at a barber pole symbol the same – I’m still awestruck at how a barber has learned the deepest values of life from his profession. Not all of the messages are positive, but I think they are all gifts to future generations from today’s cooks, barbers, lawyers, fishermen and all kinds of people and professions.”
But it’s the memorial technology element that makes the RosettaStone special, Bottorff said. If the cell phone is NFC-enabled — something still rare in North America but common overseas – simply touching the phone to the tablet allows direct access to the story behind each symbol. The internal microchip uses the phone’s own magnetic field to work and transfer the data, then returns to a dormant state.
For a regular cell phone with Internet access, users can type in the web information on the tablet and have the same information appear. Each symbol can be accompanied by about 200 words of text.
So how is this better than including a memorial website’s address on a tombstone? The answer is permanence, Bottorff said.
“Compare us to them and we look a bit primitive, he said. “The traditional memorial website is a much richer multimedia experience, but not necessarily pursuing the long-term data survival model we are. If you’re interested in a long genealogical surviving record, ours is a pretty good approach.”
RosettaStone boasts that the tablets’ information will remain accessible for the next 3,000 years. Even if the company folds, the tablets’ associated information will remain. In part, that’s because information is both hard-coded to the stones’ internal microchip and archived externally on the web. (Of course, without a time machine, it’s impossible to verify the 3,000-year claim, but the concept seems to sell nonetheless.)
Introduced a little over a month ago, Objecs has sold fewer than 100 of the products, which cost about $200. Among the buyers, Bottorff said, are a well-known American musician and a BBC Television personality.
Although Objecs initially offer for the product was a way to honor the dead, the living have quickly wanted it for themselves too. (In fact, the living are the product’s primarily buyers thus far.) On its website, Objecs notes that RosettaStones are also intended for “mature adults who have reached a stage in life with identifiable milestones and associations. Such milestones may include a profession, discipline, paternal capacity, love of music or skill….”
“When people started buying it for themselves, it was an awakening that it was something people wanted to hold onto as a family heirloom, so we adjusted our message,” Bottorff said.
Hill has been updating and frequently rewriting the text he wants to accompany his RosettaStone entries frequently.
“If a truck hits me tomorrow, I’ve got some words that will last forever and that’s real,” he said. “It’s hard to write at first. You’re thinking, ‘Wow. These are my last words.’”
After losing a close loved one back in 2008, I am constantly trying to find ways I can help both families and Funeral Directors find new ways to make the funeral planning process easier. After working closely and researching extensively, I have learned a lot about how to plan a funeral and end of life planning industries.
However, since I am not a licensed Funeral Director, I have also focused on learning how challenging and meaningful of a role a Funeral Directors can play in a families life, and therefore, I have gained a tremendous amount of well-deserved respect and appreciation for a Funeral Director’s selfless contribution to this valued public service.
So given the importance and sensitivity of this matter, I am not only constantly trying to learn more each day, but also searching for any possible new and innovative ways to help add value to this industry.
When I look back on my personal experience, below are some of the key things I truly believe would have helped my family as we worked through the many funeral planning challenges:
1. I believe it would be helpful if the Funeral Director could give a brief history about their Funeral Home, Cemetery, as well as their personal background and experience.
This would help families learn more about choosing a funeral home or cemetery, funeral director, and feel more comfortable about the qualifications, experience, and credibility of who they are dealing with.
2. I think it could be helpful if a Funeral Directors would ask if anyone involved has any history or experience with planning a funeral.
This would help the Funeral Director and the family, since this lets the Funeral Director know if they need to begin slowly, starting with the basics, or whether things could be a little easier and streamlined based on any past experience.
3. Before the Funeral Director begins to review the basic outline of the funeral planning process, it would be helpful if they ask the family if they have any important questions on their mind that they feel like they need to find answers.
This allows the family members to ask about things that might be of concern, time-sensitive, or important to know regardless of the planning process.
4. The Funeral Director could explain the general outline of what the funeral planning process involves and what they will review and work on together. Ideally, this overall outline would be great to have in writing, so they can see it, read it, plan ahead, and follow along step-by-step.
This helps the families to get an idea of what to expect, and also begin thinking about the many funeral planning challenges.
5. The Funeral Director could tell the family members to feel free to interrupt him/her at any time, and ask any questions that come to mind, no matter how basic or uncomfortable they might feel.
This helps families feel like it is OK to ask questions, since from my personal experience, I was very reluctant to ask things that I now wish I had.
6. After the funeral planning process, the Funeral Director could find a way to help families learn about some of the new and popular memorial technology tools, resources, services, and funeral home services. In fact, I would even recommend offering families a printed list of these options so you can talk about them with the families, or simply let them research these things on their own to find out more.
Why not let every family know about all of these options? If families don’t choose to add these to their funeral or memorial planning, they are still better off from knowing these options were available. And if families do find these options to helpful tools that can allow them to better heal, remember, and pay a special tribute to a loved one, everyone wins!
7. Last, I would suggest Funeral Directors consider providing every family with helpful details, such as these below, at the end of their funeral planning discussion:
– Key things to consider when planning a memorial service
– Several phone numbers to contact for any questions or concerns, 24/7
– Grief support information, grief books, and local grief support
– Information on how to give a eulogy, funeral etiquette, how to write an obituary, and other common families needs
– Contact information on Charitable Organizations, and ways to help families donate funds “in lieu of funeral flowers”
– Key reasons and benefits to consider an End of Life Plan, and where they can go to learn more
– Names and contact information for people who you recommend that would be willing to help offer free advice for any financial planning matters, such as funeral estate planning, tax planning, wealth management, etc.
Again, these are just some thoughts I had after looking back on my personal experience, as well as some of the details I have found that most families are searching for – and today this is being done largely on the Internet.
I truly hope this helps both families and Funeral Directors, as I continue my quest to make this difficult process easier!
Funeral Directors and Families Benefit From
New Memorial Technology
The following is a true story;
“Not too long ago, a friend of mine approached me whose aunt had just recently passed away. He was unable to travel to the funeral service due to a serious prior work commitment, but was comforted to hear that the technology existed to broadcast the funeral service LIVE on the internet. At his request, we contacted the funeral home that was caring for his aunt and informed them of the family’s desire to broadcast their memorial service LIVE on the Internet. Unfortunately, this particular Funeral Home was not willing to expand their services for his family’s request and take advantage of today’s new technologies. I regret to say that my friend was unable to participate in his aunt’s life celebration, and his family was extremely upset when they heard about the incident.” Curtis Funk, President, FuneralRecording.com.
The moral of the story…
If you really think about this story, not only can I can assure you that this person’s family will be taking their future business elsewhere, but I can also assure you that there are many other people who will be hearing about this story.
Now, maybe this story is an extremely uncommon situation, but what I believe is most important here is the underlying message. Funeral Webcasting, despite all of the recent hype in the funeral industry, is by no means a new technology. In fact, over the last few years it has been quickly gaining traction to the point where most family members are beginning to request it, or at the very least, expect this to be a regular part of a Funeral Director’s recommendations and services. So I cannot emphasize enough how important it that Funeral Directors embrace the many new technologies that are being so widely embraced today.
To further prove this point, in the March 2009 edition of the National Funeral Directors Association Magazine, called “Director“, John D. Reed, NFDA’s President, had the following to say;
“There is no doubt that with today’s technology, even the smallest Funeral Homes can be more competitive and cost-effective and offer the families they serve a wider range of products and services.”
New Memorial Technology – or Not?
The reality is Funeral Webcasting is just one of today’s many new and innovative memorial technology tools that are widely recognized in the funeral industry as common services that help make a difficult situation a little easier. In fact:
4. FOX News featured an excellent story about Memorial Reefs, which is a cremation option also referred to as a “Green Burial at Sea”
It is a proven fact that there are many other new funeral and memorial technologies that can significantly benefit most families. In fact, our surveys indicate that a Video Tribute and Memorial Website are also among the most popular technology tools families are searching for today. Therefore, it only makes sense that these should be viewed as standard funeral home services that today’s Funeral Directors recommend and provide.
The reality is that these new funeral technologies can help every Funeral Director in multiple ways too, such as helping strengthen the relationship with their families and communities, keeping pace with the competition, increasing website traffic, receiving more family referrals, increasing their credibility, and opening up many more opportunities for new services and growth.
Just as they have done for centuries, most Funeral Directors are quickly adapting to these new industry changes. One of the key ways a Funeral Director can measure success is through ensuring their families make the most out of this difficult situation. Since these new memorial technologies can only benefit their valued public service, most Funeral Directors are becoming more proactive. Instead of sitting back and waiting for their families to request these new helpful tools, today’s industry leaders are being proactive by taking advantage of these new opportunities in the marketplace…and adding them as a standard part of the services they provide.
Our experience with both families and Funeral Directors is that regardless of the family’s situation, or the size of your city or town, families of all kinds and sizes will warmly embrace and accept these types of services when they are correctly presented to them.
Two things we know for certain…
Here are two things we know for certain. First, given the advent of the Internet and the constant evolution of new and improved technology, we know that the funeral industry needs to keep pace with today’s constantly changing environment. Second, we know that Funeral Directors will do what they have done for centuries, which is find new ways to adapt the these changes. Our goal at FuneralResources.com is to help facilitate this process sooner versus later.