What To Do When Death Occurs

Through difficult moments and the days after loss, we’re here to help.

When a death occurs, the order in which things need to be done often depends on where the death occurred. But, one thing should always be remembered: your heightened emotional state upon the death of a loved one. That's why we suggest that you ask a friend for help - someone who is more able to think clearly, and give you the support you need.

At Greenlawn, your loved one is taken into our care by our own full-time staff, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Often times, one of our licensed funeral directors will be at the place of death in order to assist with this process. Thus, giving you an opportunity to have your questions answered by a funeral professional.

1. Notify the right people

Is the deceased at home or work, or are they under supervised care?

At home or work:

  • Call emergency personnel or their physician
  • Call the police if no one was there at the time of death
  • Call the funeral home.

Please remember, you can always call us at Greenlawn Funeral Homes and Cemeteries if you are unsure.

Under supervised care:

  • Call the funeral home

The staff will notify the rest of the necessary personnel and funeral home on your behalf.

2. Widen the circle

  • Begin discussing arrangements with the funeral home. One of our Directors will set up a time for an arrangement meeting to discuss everything associated with your desired arrangements. One thing that is very helpful, is to provide us with the "vital" information needed so the death certificate and burial permit can be completed in a timely fashion. The information that is needed can be found here. Once you "submit" the information, we can begin the process as soon as possible.
  • Notify other family members
  • Contact any clergy or other spiritual advisers

3. Answer any key questions about arrangements

Was there a pre-plan in place? If so, your loved one has taken care of all the details and just wishes for you to celebrate their life. If the death is more sudden or a plan is not in place, don’t worry, there are just a few key steps for you to take care of:

  • Determine after-life choices
    • Do you need embalming?
    • Do you need a casket?
    • Do you need to make cemetery arrangements?
  • Choose the type of service
    • Do you need a minister or other clergy member?
    • What type of service do you want to have?

Please remember you don’t need to know all the answers - that’s why we’re here, to walk you through anything at all, at any time.

4. Talk to the cemetery

At Greenlawn, we are able to handle ALL of your arrangements including interment at either one of our Memorial Parks. No need to run all over town to make arrangements. Everything your family will need can be handled with one phone call.

More Resources

Cemetery FAQs

Everything you need to know about funeral and cemeteries.

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Grief Support

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Cemetery Etiquette

Let us guide you through the ins and outs of your cemetery experience.

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Local Resources

Local resources for all your support and planning needs.

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