A typical 10-acre patch of cemetery ground contains enough furniture-grade lumber to construct 40 houses, nearly 1,000 tons of steel, 20,000 tons of concrete, and enough embalming fluid to fill a small backyard swimming pool.
You might take solace in the fact that when you die, your days of polluting the planet are over. But the truth is that the method you choose to dispose of your mortal remains has more of a deleterious impact on the environment than you might think.
The Veterans Administration offers a number of burial and memorial benefits to veterans if their discharge from the military was under conditions other than dishonorable -- which will need to be verified.
"'Til death do us part," that age-old marriage vow, has always sounded a little, well, non-committal to Confucian ears. In Vietnam, for instance, where I come from, death is not the end of relationships, it only deepens them.
After a person dies, we clearly need to make decisions regarding final disposition, for public health reasons as well as closure for the family and community. But what happens when the remains are those of a person believed to have committed a horrific, recent crime?
It may sound peculiar, but there are some very exciting things happening where death is concerned in America. The momentum of change in how we view and respond to death is building in many sectors of society as we transform our culture of death.
The phrase "no man is an island" gets tossed around pretty lightly these days, but at its core, it's about the same thing. When the funeral bells toll, don't ask who they are for. We're all in this together.