Most of us don’t want to think about death, never mind our own death. Over 80% of the population does little or no pre-arranging of funerals and many loved ones are left to mourn without knowing the wishes of their recently decease loved one. Sure you may be thinking Cremation vs Burial, or funeral service or family only quiet service, but what about more exotic and creative means of disposing of ones remains …..
First off, you can’t simply bury a body wherever you want, so lets be clear, we are talking about ones ashes here. Many famous people have had their ashes scattered in interesting ways. George Harrison (1943-2001) had his ashes scattered over a number of rivers in India. Rock Hudson (1925-1985) in the pacific. Janis Joplin (1943-1970) along the California coast.
Each state has laws affecting what happens to a body after death, and most states regulate burials and cremation as well as the scattering of ashes, or as they are becoming know as cremains. California has some of the strictest regulations (see www.nolo.com) even forcing you to make arrangements for the ashes on you own death if you choose to keep them in your home. In California it is legal to scatter the ashes at sea but it must be at least 500 yards from shore. In any event, while the act of scattering ashes is often a don’t see don’t tell act, it is wise to be clear on legalities before you undertake such an endeavor (or better yet, before you ask your loved ones to do so as part of your final wishes).
Over time even more exotic ways of disposing of ones ashes have emerged which may be of interest to many.
Under the Sea:
Eternal Reefs (see www.eternalreef.com) offers unique living memorials which are buried under the sea and become part of a coral reef. A couple of college kids who wanted to do something to help the deteriorating Florida Keys reef system and had the idea and are putting these reefs in place to help re-establish the coral reefs in southern Florida.
Space The Final Frontier:
Celestis (www.celestis.com) can launch part of your remains in an engraved container into space. Over time, these remains will fall out of orbit and fall back burning up (a second cremation of sorts), as they fall back to earth. They offer tracking tools to tell where your loved ones remains are while orbiting the earth. They have launch schedules from Florida and New Mexico into 2018
Diamonds are Forever:
LifeGem (www.lifegem.com) offers to make a diamond out of the ashes of your loved ones letting you keep their sparkle with you forever in a piece of jewelry.
In a Tattoo:
A microscopic amount of ashes are mixed in with the tattoo ink and your loved ones remain under your skin forever. Similar means of mixing small portions of cremains with colors to make paintings, sculptures or other art pieces is common place. (see http://www.redinctattoo.co.uk)
If you know of any other interesting ides please place a comment below.