UrnIn a recent AARP Bulletin I noted a "Final Farewell" article that reminded me of Yankee ingenuity. More and more Americans are choosing cremation, which costs about $2,500, compared to more than $6,000 for a conventional funeral (plus burial costs).

Some funeral homes are offering balloon releases and wine-and-cheese parties as options that are "less of a funeral and more of a celebration." The Cremation Association of North America projects that by 2025 more than half of all decedents in the US will be cremated (I will be among those).

A funeral home in my area bought a vacated branch bank that had a drive-thru and remodeled the building. They now offer a meeting place after the funeral (for a price) for the family to gather. No drive-thru for viewing, as was being done in Florida some time back, for those too busy to go inside!

My best friend is Greek and some years back his father passed away and all those who went to the grave site were invited to their restaurant for dinner. Greeks celebrate death in this way, I learned.


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