We are grateful for our Veteran's service and sacrifice
Our Services in Carlisle, PA
We're proud to do our part in honoring our country's veterans for their dedication and selfless service by giving back to those whose sacrifice and patriotism define our great nation. We would be honored to help you make arrangements for any combination of traditional military tributes because we believe it's our duty to provide you and your family with professional and dignified assistance during your time of need.
What to expect at a military funeral
The protocol of a military funeral service includes the traditional honors of a guard and the presentation of our beloved flag. Whether it is a burial or a cremation, there may be a headstone, a memorial medallion, or a military honors certificate provided by the government to honor the veteran we are saying goodbye to.
In either case, the presentation of the flag is fundamental, and we must honor it. It is necessary to remain silent and respectful while the flag is presented and folded.
The military present raises arms, and the person in charge of the ceremony may be a military, civilian, or religious representative. A few words of honor are dedicated, and prayers, too, if desired. If there is one, the casket is lifted to the funeral carriage or the grave. All of these details are planned by the family and the funeral director.
Standard Honor Military Funerals
Traditional elements and honors can include the following:
- A Military Chaplain for family members
- Flag Presentation Service by the chaplain of the American Legion
- A Final Salute at the gravesite
Full Honor Military Funerals
Full elements and honors includes standard honors and the following:
- Depending on their rank, a 21 Gun Salute
- The U.S. Flag draped over the casket and given to the next of kin following services
- The Playing of Taps by a lone bugler or audio recording
Etiquette for a Military Funeral
What to wear to a funeral?
Depending on the wishes of the family and the deceased, the dress code may range from absolute black, as in traditional services. It can also be white, as in a celebration of life. A specific color decision can be allowed, too, as long as the family permits it. However, to be safe, the color to choose is black.
We usually suggest our visitors pay respects through clothing. Presenting ourselves neatly and in clean clothes is a symbol of care as well. It does not have to be anything fancy but appropriate for the occasion: no ripped or dirty clothes, bright colors or flashy patterns, and distracting accessories. It is a moment for the family and the person we are saying goodbye to. We can reserve specific details and colors for other occasions.
What to say at the funeral?
Traditionally, the one leading the military/religious ceremony will say a few words appreciating the service the deceased person gave to our nation and the immense value of that. Regardless, if the family allows it, a more personal speech can be given. If you intend to say a few words, please check with the family first to see if you can do so. You may ask our funeral directors if you need advice in giving a speech. They have a lot of experience and will be happy to help. If you prefer to be discreet, you may respectfully approach the family and offer your condolences, showing appreciation for the military services done by the deceased.
What are empathy gifts for the family?
Some of the most meaningful details we have seen during our veteran's funeral services are sympathy cards with beautiful messages. Also, floral arrangements in the colors of our flag and memorial-related gifts, such as lovely photos of the deceased in beautiful frames decorated with American symbols.
A book is also a good idea. It does not have to be necessarily about grief and loss. It could be a light-themed book that they would like. The gift does not have to be expensive. You can do it if you have the financial means to give a gift. If not, simply paying honor and respect is more than appropriate.
Other Veteran Benefits
In addition to coordinating honors related to the service itself, we can help you communicate with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to arrange for:
- A Presidential Memorial Certificate. This is a certificate expressing the nation's recognition of the veteran's service. The veteran's name is inscribed and the certificate bears the signature of the president. Certificates are issued in the name of honorably discharged, deceased veterans. Contact us for assistance in applying for a Presidential Memorial Certificate, and we would be happy to guide you through the process.
- Headstones or Markers. The VA provides headstones and markers for the graves of veterans anywhere in the world and for eligible dependents of veterans buried in national, state veteran, or military cemeteries.
- Memorial Plots. If an eligible veteran's remains are not available for burial, the VA will provide a plot and headstone or marker in a national cemetery for memorialization. If you wish to place the memorial in a cemetery other than a national cemetery, the VA will provide the headstone or marker but not the plot itself.
- Burial in a VA National Cemetery. This includes the gravesite, opening and closing of the grave, a grave box, and perpetual care.
- Reimbursement of Burial Expenses. For information on eligibility and the different levels of potential reimbursement, please review their Guide to VA Burial Allowances.
Please visit the following links for detailed information about the options available for honoring service members and other aspects of military funerals:
- U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. Click on Veteran Services and look underneath the Burials & Memorials heading.
- Veterans' Funeral and Burial Benefits. Helpful information from Funeral Consumers Alliance.
- Honoring Those Who Served. An explanation of the various types of honors available for military funerals.
Planning a Funeral Service for a Veteran? Let Us Help.
If a loved one is passing away soon or you want to be ready for the future, you can use our preplan funeral services online tool. It is user-friendly, and it will take you just some minutes. Please click below to start your application, and our caring team will contact you immediately. We are here to help!