Frequently Asked Questions

How is cremation accomplished?
Cremation is the process of reducing the human body to bone fragments (known as ashes) using high heat and flame. The deceased is placed in a cremation chamber in a combustible container. All organic matter is consumed by heat and evaporation within approximately 2 hours. The cremated remains are carefully removed from the chamber and placed in a cooling tray. Next, the ashes are placed in a durable, plastic bag inside a rigid, plastic container. A stainless steel positive identification tag will be enclosed in the urn with the cremated remains. Cremated remains are also known as ashes, or cremains.

What options are there for the disposition of my ashes?
The options are endless. Your ashes can be scattered at sea or returned to your family in an appropriate container. Additionally, you can make arrangements to have your ashes interred in a public cemetery; or a National Veteran cemetery if you qualify. Cremated remains can be scattered by your family in a special place, or shared among your relatives and kept in keepsake urns. Our licensed staff can help you make the decision best for you, as well as transfer the cremains to the urn/container of your choice.

Do I purchase a casket for the cremation?
Not necessarily. Typically, Ithaca Cremation Service utilizes a strong cardboard, covered container to allow for dignified handling throughout the process. The  rigid card board box is  called an “alternative container” and is included in the cost for professional services. However, cloth covered caskets are available for purchase, should you desire something a little more traditional.

Is embalming required?
No. Embalming is unnecessary when a body will be cremated . The decedent is placed in a cooled environment holding facility.

Can my family view my body without embalming?
Yes, in most cases, immediate family members can briefly view the deceased prior to cremation. (Additional fees may apply.)

Is my family allowed to witness the cremation?
Certainly. Our modern facilities provide families with the opportunity to witness the body being placed in the cremation chamber for religious reasons or simply for peace of mind. This must be coordinated with the crematory of use, and additional fees may apply.

If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact our office