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Tuesday, June 13, 2006

The Price Of Death - Too Much?

There's a new trend in town. Amid the facts that funerals are getting more and more costly, even cremation is a large expense, and the money to put a loved one to rest just keeps getting higher and higher as funeral parlors feed more and more on the grieving - there's sadly one thing to can do to avoid it all. For most, the easy answer is to simply stop death itself, though our fun-gineers are still tinkering with that process. The harder answer comes with an even harder price, non-monetary as it may be:

Many people are abandoning their deceased loved ones.

The easiest way to not pay for a funeral is to simply not have one. The bodies are left at the coronor's if nobody comes to claim them and handle funeral arrangements. Funerals alone can cost upwards of $6,000 and cremation is still rather expensive, though less so than the alternative. Well, the alternative that doesn't involve leaving a loved one in the morgue and letting the city handle it.

Yes, the city foots the bill for unclaimed bodies. Most are cremated (to make things simple) and they usually wind up in a local cemetary in a small city-owned plot. It's not ritzy, but the city tries to handle the situations with the grace and dignity that loved ones wouldn't offer.

In fact, sometimes it's not the "can't afford it" speech. Many families choose to use insurance money and inheritances for things other than the funeral and forego it entirely. One woman reported that she planned on using the life insurance money to remodel her kitchen, rather than give a burial to her mother-in-law.

Odds are she got to use the "It's what she would have wanted" line, too.


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