Cremation FAQ's - Understanding Cremation

VERY IMPORTANT! Avoid the Trick & Traps of misleading cremation answers:  When comparing firms that offer cremation, one should always ask the following:

    1. What is the name of the crematory on the Oklahoma Crematory License?
    2. Where is the Crematory located AND when can I inspect it?
    3. The price you have quoted me just now, is that the amount i can write on my check?

Butler-Stumpff & Dyer Funeral Home and Crematory of Tulsa operates its own crematory. The Crematory is located here in our funeral home.

Over the years, we have learned practically all there is to know about the cremation process. Following are answers to some of the most commonly asked questions about cremation.

What Is Cremation?

To begin with, it is probably easier to describe what cremation isn’t. Cremation is not final disposition of the remains, nor is it a type of funeral service. Rather, it is a process of reducing the human body to bone fragments using high heat and flame.


What Services Are Available With Cremation?

Any traditional funeral service with the body present can precede the cremation. Alternatively, a memorial service can take place after the cremation has been completed.


Is A Casket Needed For Cremation?

No, a casket is not required for cremation under Oklahoma State Law. Often, an alternative container constructed of cardboard, which is cremated with the body, is used. The only time a casket is required is when the family chooses a public service with the body present prior to cremation. For these occasions, we offer a selection of inexpensive cremation caskets as well as economical rental caskets.


Is Embalming Required Prior To Cremation?

Absolutely not and it is against the law for a funeral home to tell you otherwise. The only time embalming is legally required is if the family chooses a public service with an open casket prior to cremation.


Can The Body Be Viewed Without Embalming?

Yes; an immediate family member may briefly view the deceased prior to cremation at the crematory without any preparation, as long as the viewing is concluded prior to the first 48 hours after death.


Can The Family Witness The Cremation?

Yes. Our state-of-the-art cremation facility is set up to allow family members to be present when the body is placed into the cremation chamber. In fact, some religious groups include this as part of their funeral custom.


Is Cremation Accepted By All Religions?

Today most religions allow cremation except for Orthodox Jewish, Islamic, Eastern Orthodox, and a few Fundamentalist Christian faiths. The Catholic Church accepts cremation as long as it is not chosen for reasons which are contrary to Christian teachings. Some people believe that cremation is against the teachings of the Bible, but according to one famous Biblical scholar, “what occurs to the body after death has no bearing on the soul’s resurrection. The body that rises is not made of the same substances as the one that was buried, or cremated, but is immortal and incorruptible.”


Can An Urn Be Brought Into Church?

Nearly all Protestant Churches allow for the urn to be present during the memorial service. The Diocese of Tulsa, which has jurisdiction over all Catholic Churches in 31 counties of NE Oklahoma, also allows the cremated remains to be present during the Memorial Mass. In fact, if the family is planning on a memorial service, we encourage the cremated remains be present as it provides a focal point for the service.


What Can Be Done With The Cremated Remains?

There are many options. Remains can be buried in a cemetery lot or cremation garden; or the cremation urn can be placed in a columbarium, kept at home, or scattered on private property. We also offer scattering services and ash burial spaces in our Cemetery. Let us advise you of these options while facilitating any arrangements.


Are There Any Laws Governing Cremation?

Cremation regulations vary from state-to-state. In Oklahoma, there are several laws of which the consumer should be aware. First, a cremation authorization form must be signed by the individual legally authorized to make the cremation arrangements. Finally, cremation cannot take place until the deceased has been viewed or released by signature by a state-appointed Medical Examiner or designee.


Do People Choose Cremation Only To Save Money?

While some people select cremation for economy, many choose this option for other reasons. The simplicity and dignity of cremation, environmental concerns, and the flexibility cremation affords in ceremony planning and final disposition all add to its increasing popularity.


Don’t Most Funeral Homes Have A Crematory?

NO!  in fact most funeral homes subcontract this delicate procedure out to a third-party provider in another town where the funeral home has little or no control over the crematory’s operating procedures. Often, the family incurs additional transportation expenses and needless delay. By contrast, we own our cremation equipment, which is operated by our fully-licensed and highly-trained staff. Our cremation equipment is state-of-the-art and equals or exceeds every state and local operating standard and requirement. Our crematory is open for inspection during normal business hours.


How Can I Be Sure I Receive The Correct Remains?

We have developed a most rigorous set of operating policies and procedures in order to maximize our level of service and minimize the potential for human error. Our Worry-Free Cremation process provides positive identification of the deceased and is assured throughout each stage of the cremation process. We only allow licensed professionals to operate our cremation equipment. We believe no other cremation facility in the state of Oklahoma can match our rigid operating procedures.


How Long Does The Actual Cremation Take?

It depends on the weight of the individual. For an average sized adult, cremation takes from two to three hours at normal operating temperature between 1,500 degrees F to 2,000 degrees F.


What Happens After The Cremation Is Complete?

All organic bone fragments, which are very brittle, as well as non-consumed metal items are swept into the back of the cremation chamber and into a stainless steel cooling pan. All non-consumed items, like metal from clothing, hip joints, and bridge work, are separated from the cremated remains. This separation is accomplished through visual inspection as well as using a strong magnet for smaller and minute metallic objects. Items such as dental gold and silver are non-recoverable and are commingled with the cremated remains. Remaining bone fragments are then processed in a machine to a consistent size and placed into a temporary or permanent urn, selected by the family.


Can Two Cremations Be Performed At Once?

Never. Not only is it illegal to do so, most modern cremation chambers are not of sufficient size to accommodate more than one adult. Thus, it would be a practical impossibility to conduct multiple cremations simultaneously.


What Do The Cremated Remains Look Like?

Cremated remains resemble coarse sand and are whitish to light gray in color. The remains of an average size adult usually weigh between four to six pounds.


Are All The Cremated Remains Returned?

With the exception of minute and microscopic particles, which are impossible to remove from the cremation chamber and processing machine, all of the cremated remains are returned to the family.


Do I Need An Urn?

An urn is not required by law. However, an urn may be desired if there is to be a memorial service or the remains are to be interred in a cemetery. If an urn is not purchased through us or provided by the family, the cremated remains will be returned in a temporary container.

Learn more about Butler-Stumpff & Dyer’s crematory’s Worry-Free Cremation Process.