The Herald Bulletin

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Columns

April 5, 2014

Rob Loose: Need for funeral planning never takes a vacation

What if a loved one dies away from home?

OK, so it’s probably not something you want to think about while you’re sipping Mai Tais on the beach, but it is important to plan ahead for this scenario.

Frequent travelers and snowbirds ask me this question all the time. Whether you’re on a cross-country escapade or thawing out in Florida for the winter, what do you do if your loved one passes away?

It depends on what you want.

If you’re a snowbird, you’ve probably made plenty of friends in your warm winter retreat. In that case, you may want to hold two separate visitations or services — one in the place where your loved one’s death occurred (whether it’s Flagstaff, Ariz., or Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) and another here in Anderson.

In that case, you will need to call a well-respected funeral home in your current area and also call the Madison County funeral home of your choice. A local funeral home should work with the out-of-town funeral home to ensure all the services and necessary transportation services are arranged according to your wishes.

On the other hand, if you want to hold a service only in Indiana, you would need to call the local funeral home of your choice directly. The local funeral home would immediately contact a reputable funeral home in the area where your loved one’s death occurred.

That funeral home would promptly dispatch a team of professionals to the place of death, care for your loved one as you have directed and handle the transportation of your loved one back to Anderson.

Before a funeral home can transport a loved one back to Anderson via road or air transportation, it is required to gather some basic vital statistics and secure all the proper paperwork. That’s why it is important to carry an Emergency Alert Card with you every time you travel.

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