Trend for cremations over burials seen on the West Coast

There are a number of ways of dealing with of our remains when the time comes. You could choose cremation, burial, or green burial. But out here on the West Coast, the trend towards cremation has been increasing.

"Many people choose cremation because they feel it is the cleanest form of disposition," says Keith Louw, Location Manager for First Memorial Burkeview.. "Cost is also a consideration. Depending on what your request is for disposition of the cremated remains, a cremation might be a more cost effective option than a burial."

Options for disposition of the cremated remains range from a full in-ground burial, to placing them in an urn niche in a cemetery, to scattering them either in a cemetery's Garden of Remembrance, or somewhere significant to the deceased.

There are also a number of options for the type of service you can have for your remains, or those of a loved one.

"A very popular service for cremations is the remembrance service," says Keith. "This is also called a Celebration of Life or a Memorial Service. Here, the cremation takes place at a different time than the service. Often, if death occurs in the winter, the cremation happens within a few days, but the memorial service is postponed until the spring or summer."

A full service occurs in a church or the funeral home chapel.

"The Full Service Option typically involves the funeral service followed by the funeral party attending the cemetery for the interment or in some cases the crematorium for the cremation," Keith explains.

There's also a growing trend towards the "no service" option.

"The No Service Option," Keith notes, "is where the family choose not to have a service in a church or chapel and instead make their own arrangements. It could be held in the common area of a strata building, or a gathering at a home, or a simple remembrance by a favourite place of the deceased. While the funeral home does not host the event we can support the family by creating memorial folders or creating a photo slideshow, to assist in personalizing the event."

To arrange a cremation, Keith recommends contacting First Memorial Burkeview, or another professional funeral service provider of your choice.

"There are a number of legal requirements to be taken care of on death and before cremation," Keith says. "At First Memorial Burkeview, we work with the family to complete the appropriate paperwork, register the death, and advise on the options for the disposition of the remains."

For more information on First Memorial Burkeview and its cremation services, call 604.944.4128, visit the website at, or stop by 1340 Dominion Avenue, Port Coquitlam.

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