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Cremation Services



When pre-planning a funeral or when arranging funeral services for a family member, various choices are presented. One of these options is cremation. Cremation services are intended to be an alternative to entombment or burial yet can provide your family with the same benefits that a traditional funeral offers and several other unique options as well.

The reasons our families choose cremation are as unique and personal as the individual families we work with. Regardless of the reason, whether it is religious, personal, environmental or otherwise, many people have a misconception about cremation that it is direct, immediate and simple. Although this is an option, once our families realize that cremation is only the final disposition of a loved one, they often choose to have many of the same services that can be arranged prior to a burial. Cremation can be a wonderful option for many because it provides many of the same options as a traditional service, but it also allows for some unique and customary memorials after the cremation takes place

We encourage our families to consider their unique choices both prior to cremation and after cremation has taken place. By discussing your options with one of our funeral consultants, you can discuss and decide on a service that is personalized and designed with your preferences in mind. As with families that choose burial, we can customize your cremation services to fit your unique needs.

Although cremation is not new, many people come to us with questions. These are some of the most frequently asked questions regarding cremation and cremation services. 


First of all, cremation is not something new and it is not a substitute for a funeral. It's a process that has been around for thousands of years and is really just another method preparing the deceased for memorial services.

The process of cremation often begins with an identification procedure that is designed to provide peace of mind to family members and ensure the integrity of the cremated remains. Because cremation is an irreversible process, positive identification of the deceased is important.  This can be done through an informal viewing that we can arrange, or many people choose to have a formal wake with an open casket.

Once positive identification has been established and all necessary permits and authorizations have been obtained, the cremation casket or container is placed into the cremation chamber. The casket or container is then exposed to intense heat and flame for a period of approximately 2 to 3 hours. The exact length of time necessary for cremation will vary depending on the size and weight of the deceased and temperatures will range between 1500 to 1800 degrees. During the cremation process all matter will be consumed except certain bone fragments and non-combustible items such as prostheses, casket hinges and jewelry.

After cremation is complete, a cooling period is required prior to the recovery of the cremated remains. Following the cooling period, the cremated remains are carefully gathered from the cremation chamber and all non-combustible items are separated and disposed of properly. The remaining bone fragments are further processed, reducing them to a fine, grayish-white, granular or powdery consistency that generally weights between 4 to 8 pounds. Crematory personnel then carefully place the cremated remains into an urn selected by the family or into a container designed for temporary storage.

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Dewhirst Boles Funeral Home and Cremation Service
80 Broadway
| Methuen, MA 01844
Tel: 1-978-687-1333
| Fax: 1-978-686-4965


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You are welcome to call us any time of the day, any day of the week, for immediate assistance. Or, visit our funeral home in person at your convenience.

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