Understanding Burial Services

At Geils Funeral Home, we have the deepest respect for this traditional practice. If you are interested in learning more about the burial services we offer, please review the following information. Should you have questions about anything, please call us at (630) 766-3232.

There are many things to consider when deciding whether to bury a recently-deceased loved one, or when selecting burial during funeral pre-planning. One of the first decisions you’ll need to make involves choosing both the cemetery and the specific place of burial within its grounds. You’ll then need to select a casket and possibly a burial vault, as many modern cemeteries require their use. At some point, and this does not have to take place right away, the decision becomes one of selecting the headstone or marker and writing the inscription. A member of our professional staff will be available should you wish to have assistance in making each of these decisions.

Burial funeral services in one form or another have been a part of human communities for millennials. If you scan our history, it really doesn’t matter “when” or “where” you look, burial practices can be found. Graveside services can be seen in hundreds of Hollywood films and television productions; some are uplifting, others are humorous; and some merely attempt to convey the emotional weight carried by the characters involved. Because of these cinematic efforts, most are familiar with the appearance and traditional ceremonial format of a burial service. However, when it comes time to make arrangements for a graveside service on behalf of a deceased family member, it can be challenging to turn what is only vaguely familiar into a truly meaningful, deeply personal event. This burial service planning guide outlines the major steps involved and identifies the primary “talking points” when meeting with the funeral director. If you have questions about what you read here, please call us at (630) 766-3232. A member of our staff is available, ready with the answers you need.

Selection of Cemetery & Burial Property

Before we get too far into the subject, we should mention that a family member may have already chosen and purchased a burial plot or mausoleum crypt. It’s also very possible a distant relative purchased a large section in a local cemetery intended for the future burial of family members. In either of those situations, you’ll need to obtain the documents necessary to prove ownership of burial rights and then bring them to the initial meeting with the funeral director.

What if there is no such pre-plan in place? Then you will need to locate a cemetery and select the burial property on your own. And while we know today’s consumers are smart and have access to more information about products and services than ever before, we also know that the purchase of cemetery property isn’t a commonly-made transaction. For that reason, we offer the following information:

  • Unlike when you purchase a house (where the structure and the land are yours to do with as you like); when you buy a cemetery property, such as a burial plot, mausoleum crypt or columbarium niche; you are merely buying the right to inter (or bury) an individual (or individuals) in that location. The property you now have the rights over remains the property (and the responsibility) of the cemetery administration.
  • A stated portion of the money you pay for these interment rights will be contributed to an irrevocable fund used in the on-going care of the cemetery grounds.
  • The burial, as well as any future commemorative visits you make to the location will be subject to the specific by-laws as written by the cemetery administration.
  • Just like when you buy a house, the cost of burial property rights range widely in price, depending on the exact location of the plot, crypt or niche. If you have time, you can certainly find resale “deals” on cemetery property; but if you’re not shopping far in advance of need, this may not be of help to you.
  • There are other costs involved with the burial of a loved one, such as the fees charged by the cemetery for the “opening and closing” of the site, the headstone or grave marker and its installation, and the purchase of a casket and burial vault.

Because we have strong working relationships with local cemetery administrators, we want to help you with this part of the process. Simply call us at (630) 766-3232 to get started.

Choosing a Casket & Vault

The casket is often singled out as the most expensive purchase you will need to make during this time. While we cannot really disagree with that statement, we will tell you that the purchase does not have to cost more than you can afford. We have a wide selection of affordable caskets and burial vaults from which to choose and will work closely with you to keep the cost of your loved one’s graveside service within your family’s budget.

The cost of a casket aside, the type of casket you select will be based largely on personal preference. Would you prefer a casket of fine hardwood or metal? There are caskets of walnut, cherry, maple, oak, pine and other species of wood. Metal caskets come in varying thicknesses and a wide array of finishes. We do not want you to guess what is best for your situation; instead we would like you to turn to us for assistance. We have the experience to guide you in the selection of the most appropriate casket and vault for your needs. Call us at (630) 766-3232, or stop by our office.