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The following is a list of choices which represent the cost of our services. They may or may not include the casket or container required for visitation or viewing, burial, entombment or cremation.

You are in no way limited to these service options. You may itemize services in order to select only those which are right for you.

This package includes basic services of the funeral director and staff; embalming; preparation for viewing-including but not limited to cosmetizing and dressing of deceased; use of facilities and staff for viewing (per one day or a portion thereof); use of hearse for funeral service; transfer/flower vehicle; transfer of remains to the funeral home (within 40 miles); acknowledgement cards up to 50; memorial folders and printing up to 200; register book; transportation to crematorium and cremation fee.

The cremation charge is included in this package.

In this section

Cremation Services

Service Calendar

Burial of Cremains

Funeral traditions have changed over the years.  As cremation becomes more popular, it poses new challenges not faced with the “traditional” funerals with caskets. Obviously, the movement and burial of caskets require different planning and equipment than is needed for urns. 

We are seeing these challenges first-hand in Spink County.  Please take a moment to read through these.  Your understanding and compliance may help many future generations of your family.

       -       Mobility:

An urn of ashes is obviously much easier to transport long distances than a casket.  We receive cremains regularly from all over the country.  Right now, the United States Postal Service is the only delivery system to handle cremains.  However, it is also very easy for a family to transport their loved one’s cremains in a private vehicle or by mailing them to a local friend or relative. 

 -          Burial:

Here is where we are running into many problems.  We continue to be contacted by local cemetery sextons after they have discovered cremains being buried by family in a “private, family get together” or accidentally learn of it after-the-fact.  Families are choosing not to notify the cemetery sexton for multiple reasons.  However, without the sexton being notified, cemetery records will not be accurate and may cause problems in the future:

o   Sextons are responsible for marking graves for the gravediggers who are hired to dig graves.  The gravedigger relies on the sexton for marking the grave accurately before they dig and sextons rely on accurate records in order to instruct the gravediggers appropriately.  When individuals are not working with the cemetery’s sexton, there could be serious issues in the future:

- Each cemetery has guidelines on how many urns may be buried with a casket or multiple urns in an individual grave. 

- If the sexton is unaware of a cremains burial (with or without an urn), the gravedigger may unintentionally dig up or do damage to an urn or the actual cremains already in the grave.  The sextons are trying to keep detailed records of how many urns are in a grave and their position within that grave.

o   If your loved one already has a headstone in a cemetery but will not be physically buried there, please notify the sexton so the record can show no physical burial where there is a headstone.  It will save confusion in the future.

o   Please note that more and more cemeteries are requiring urn vaults for burial.  There are a variety of vaults available, but the purpose is the same – to protect your loved one’s ashes.  Your loved one’s cremains are placed in the vault and sealed prior to burial.  The vault will protect your loved one. 

 

       -          Genealogy

o   If a person is buried without any documentation, there is a good chance that the next generations will not know the final resting place of that family member. 

o   As more and more cemeteries make the transition to computerized programs for burial records, if a loved one is not documented, there will be no record online of those the sexton does not know about.

o   A prime example is a call we received almost two years ago from a family in California.  They were looking for their “Aunt Martha.”  They thought another family member brought “Aunt Martha” (cremains in an urn) to a local cemetery for burial and wanted us to confirm that.  The cremains were not forwarded to the funeral home, the sexton had no record of “Aunt Martha” and no documentation was ever filed to document final disposition with the sexton, the county or the state.  To this day, “Aunt Martha” is still “missing” because the family cannot find anyone who remembers what happened and the family member who supposedly transported “Aunt Martha” has since passed away.  In fact, they believe “Aunt Martha’s” ashes may have been put in her favorite teapot instead of a traditional urn and there is a chance that “Aunt Martha” may have been unintentionally thrown away when the family cleaned the apartment out.   This family may never know what became of “Aunt Martha.”

 

        -          Headstones

We sell headstones and we rely on the sextons to mark each grave prior to the headstone being set.  They will flag each grave as needed which tells the setters exactly where to place a headstone.  Some digging is required prior to a headstone setting and if no one knows that someone’s ashes are buried there, damage may occur to an urn or as we’ve unfortunately seen, ashes disturbed or discarded because they were buried in a plastic bag without the sexton’s knowledge. 

 

        -          Documentation

o   Documentation is required to properly register a burial. 

-  It starts with the local cemetery sexton as discussed above. 

- A burial permit needs to be filed with the county where burial occurs.

- A burial permit is also used as registration with the state.

o   To improve our own records of final disposition, we have implemented the following at the funeral home:

We complete a “receipt” document for each cremation that is in our care. 

·         We complete this document with burial information when we handle the burial and this documentation remains with the individual’s file in a fireproof cabinet.

·         When a family takes their loved one from our care, we have them sign the receipt and only the person who signed the contract is able to remove their loved one from the funeral home unless they give authorization otherwise.  We make a copy of their driver’s license to put on file as well.

o   We include the family’s intention for final disposition.  For example, we make a note on the receipt that as of that date and time, the family indicated that their loved one would be “scattered in the Black Hills in the summer of 2019” or “committal service and burial on May 10, 2019.”  If the family changes their mind after they leave, of course, we only have on record what their intention was that day.  

We encourage each family to protect their loved one who is being laid to rest.  Please take the time to contact the sexton of the cemetery and follow the regulations in place at each cemetery.  Please allow the cemetery sextons (most of whom are volunteers) to keep accurate records for your family in the future. 

We share this information because we are witnessing family’s anguish not being able to find their loved one’s final place of rest.  Please help us, the sextons and the gravediggers help your family for years to come.  If you would like more information, please do not hesitate to contact us at the funeral home (605-472-2444).

The following sextons are those we work with the most and have graciously allowed us to publish their contact information:

 

CEMETERY LOCATION

NAME OF CEMETERY

SEXTON NAME

SEXTON PHONE #

Ashton

Ashton

Bob Oberfoell

605-380-5597

Athol

Athol

Deb Christensen

605-460-0161

Athol

St. Mary’s Catholic

Bob Woodring

605-460-2853

Burdette

Burdette

Dan Bottum

605-450-0497

Conde

St. John’s

Tim Van Hatten

605-382-5816

Doland

Doland

Joseph Remily

605-450-0133

Doland

Rosehill

Harvey Wollman

605-266-2874

Frankfort

Mt. Hope

Alan Johnson

605-472-1741

Frankfort

St. Ann’s Catholic

Bob Knox

605-472-0971

Mellette

Calvary

Greg Morgan

605-228-3456

Mellette

Mellette

Craig Oberle

605-380-2535

Miller

St. Ann’s Catholic

Roger Zens

605-354-2071

Northville

Plainview

Lyle Peterson

605-887-3522

Redfield

Greenlawn

City of Redfield

605-472-4550

Redfield

St. Bernard’s Catholic

Kelly Hyke

605-472-2444

Rockham

Grace

Mark Baxter

605-450-0206

Tulare

Garfield

Ted Price

605-596-4315

Tulare

Graceland

Loren Marzahn

605-460-2265

Tulare

St. John’s

Wayne Binger

605-450-0255

Tulare

Tulare

Ted Price

605-596-4315

Zell

St. Mary’s Catholic

Jerry Zens

605-472-2088


We thank all sextons and grave diggers for their hard work, attention to detail and willingness to help us serve families with professionalism and compassion.  And we thank families in advance for assisting the cemetery sextons to keep accurate records.

Kelly and Bonnie Hyke  

    



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