Going Above & Beyond to Honor Veterans Who Choose Cremation

Going Above & Beyond to Honor Veterans Who Choose Cremation

Posted by Jennifer Cummins on Jun 28, 2022

With more families of veterans choosing cremation, funeral directors across the U.S. have adapted and reimagined the traditional military burial traditions. The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs now includes a reference to urns in its statement on veteran burial as follows, "A United States flag is provided, at no cost to drape the casket or accompany the urn of a deceased veteran" (our emphasis).

Three Ways to Honor Veterans Who Choose Cremation

1. Incorporate the United States flag

Where does the flag rest if there is no casket? Some funeral directors have the flag folded and resting next to the cremation urn. Alternatively, the flag may be draped over a podium or the urn itself as long as the flag does not touch the ground. Flag etiquette dictates that nothing can be placed on top of the U.S. flag (such as flowers or medals).

After a military funeral, most families need a flag case for the presented flag. Reflections Urns & Memorials carries a USA-made flag case with accompanying pedestal cremation urn and/or medal display case.

2. Recognize military service in the choice of urn

Funeral professionals can suggest urns that pay tribute to military service or that incorporate U.S. symbols. Eagle urns and flag urns are very popular choices for veterans. The emblems of each branch of the military are available in engraving artwork options or medallions that can be added to almost any urn. Lastly, the simple choice of a colored urn in red or navy blue can have a dramatic impact at veteran's memorial service.

3. Incorporate other patriotic memorial products and ideas

The memorial service for a veteran can include other patriotic ideas and products. Certainly floral arrangements can incorporate red, white and blue including an urn wreath. Honor personnel can stand by the urn on a podium and/or present the flag as part of the service. "Taps" can be played at the end of a service instead of at the conclusion of a military burial. Family members can choose to wear cremation jewelry such as the Eagle Cremation Jewelry Pendant or Silver Star Cremation Jewelry or be given these pendants to have in remembrance of the honoree.