The following checklist will help you create your personalized plan.

Ways to Plan Ahead:


Gather personal information for your obituary.
Choose a charity to direct donations to, if desired.
Choose a funeral home.
Make note of any special instructions you desire for your services and final disposition.

Funeral Service

Choose burial or cremation.
Select a casket or cremation container.
Choose the location and type of service.
Decide whether you’d like to have a viewing or visitation.
Choose floral arrangements.
Select which photographs and memorabilia you’d like to display.
Consider any customs, traditions, or religious rites that are important to you and your family.
Choose the clothing you’d like to be dressed in.
Select music and hymns, if desired.
Select a style for your stationery and memorial register book.
Arrange transportation for your physical remains and your family.
Brainstorm any additional ways you’d like to personalize the services or pay tribute to your accomplishments, hobbies, personality, and life story.


Choose a clergy member or officiator to preside over the service.
Select any musicians whose talents you’d like to employ.
Select pallbearers.
Choose friends or family members to perform the eulogy, read scripture, or prepare a speech.


Choose a cemetery.
Select a burial or cremation plot, or a mausoleum, if appropriate.
Decide between above- and below-ground burial.
Select a memorial or grave marker and inscription.

Information You’ll Need:

Vital Statistics

Your father’s name
Your mother’s maiden name
Your level of education
Your social security number


Fraternal organizations
Service organizations
Union memberships
Any special recognitions you have

If you’re a veteran, you’ll also need to include:

Military service
Branch rank
Date of enlistment
Date of discharge
Name(s) of war/conflict(s) toured
Serial number

There’s no need to make all the decisions right away. For personalized assistance in creating your plan, contact one of our experts to schedule a one-on-one meeting.