Spence Funeral Services Blog

What is the PA state law regarding funeral processions?

As one might expect, each state has its own laws regarding funeral processions. In Pennsylvania, each vehicle in the procession must have its headlights lit and emergency lights flashing as well as...
By William Spence
Tuesday, January 24, 2023

GoFundMe for Funeral Expenses

An unexpected loss can be devastating—not only emotionally, but also financially. Many people turn to GoFundMe and other platforms to raise money for funeral costs because they feel stuck. But usin...
By William Spence
Thursday, January 5, 2023

How should I dress for a funeral?

In the past, custom dictated that immediate family wore black clothing to the funeral of a deceased family member. While other relatives and friends didn’t necessarily need to be dressed in bl...
By William Spence
Thursday, December 29, 2022

Are vaults required in Pennsylvania?

Vaults or other types of outer burial containers are not required by federal or Pennsylvania state law to be placed in the ground prior to a casket being buried. However, most cemeteries in Lancast...
By William Spence
Friday, December 16, 2022

What sets William P. Spence Funeral & Cremation Services, Inc., apart from other funeral homes?

Providing services to families that are appropriate and meaningful at an affordable price are the hallmarks of our business. Part of our mission is to exceed the expectations of the families we ser...
By William Spence
Friday, December 9, 2022

Children and Grief

Grief is a human reaction to loss.  Grief can be experienced as the result of the loss of a job, a home, a marriage, a pet, a lost opportunity, a relationship, and the list is endless.  I...
By William Spence
Thursday, December 1, 2022

How included should children be in funerals?

This is a great question that often gets asked.  For the record, I am not a licensed psychologist, counselor, or even a parent.  However, my study and observation have provide me with sev...
By William Spence
Friday, November 18, 2022

Previous Posts

The thing about “Closure”

The longer I am a funeral director the greater disdain I have for the word “closure” as it is used in the context of one’s grief. Many well-meaning individuals, and even professionals, often offer ...

What is embalming?

Modern day embalming is the process of introducing an organic aldehyde solution into the deceased body, mainly through the circulatory system. The embalmer enters the arterial system and injec...

What does direct cremation mean?

The term “direct cremation” doesn’t mean what you think it means. Some have mistakenly understood that direct cremation has everything to do with time and restrictions. Neither is true.&n...

Is embalming required by law?

Embalming is only required by Pennsylvania law under certain circumstances.  If it is the desire of the family to have a public viewing of the deceased, the law requires that the body be embal...

The Queen's Funeral

Great Britain has demonstrated to the world in a royal manner the importance and power that ceremony and ritual provide to family and community when someone they love dies.  Across time and cu...

How do I choose an urn?

The primary purpose of an urn is to contain cremated remains. Beyond that, consideration must be given to functionality, material, personal preference, durability, size, and cost. Perhaps the first...

What happens if I die away from my hometown?

Although it is seldom that death occurs when traveling for business or pleasure, it occasionally happens.  The short answer to the question is, “Call the funeral director of your choice in you...