Death in the Time of COVID-19

Guidance about gatherings in the wake of COVID-19 have been changing rapidly, but guidelines recommending that Americans avoid groups of over 10 people have touched every aspect of life, from schools to restaurants and bars, weddings and even funerals. Religious leaders, funeral homes and families have been scrambling to figure out how traditional rituals of group grieving will work with other tools. There’s some good advice emerging, including information in this blog post from

Streaming and other online solutions
Like Solace, our friends at Lantern were already trying to make life easier for families by having online tools for planning and articles with information on wills, grief, budgeting and more.

Other online companies in the funeral space have seen a surge in traffic this week as family members looked for streaming services and other digital solutions so they could gather virtually or perform religious rituals remotely. Loved ones are also turning to tools like Zoom, WhatsApp, Skype, FaceTime or Facebook Live for virtual connection.

Celebration of Life
Of course, rescheduling a Celebration of Life is another option. Since this is a less formal gathering and not dependent on happening quickly, you could reschedule it for another time or let family and friends know you will be rescheduling it when a timeline becomes clearer.

Outdoor gatherings
If you are able to gather in small groups (under 10) in the outdoors, this may be an option if you maintain the six foot guidance. Both the Washington State Parks and Oregon State Park systems have taken some steps to react to virus prevention measures, but at this writing, most parks remained open. National parks have waived entrance fees.

Digital paperwork
Secure online paperwork allows you to sign documents with a tablet or phone so that no in-person meeting is required. Solace Cremation uses technology from Adobe, which makes our process safe and secure, but also convenient.

Stay safe
In these challenging times, the best option may be to stay home and use services like Solace Cremation where you do not need to leave your home to care for your loved one when they pass. Sharing your thoughts and feelings online in an online memorial or obituary is another good way to honor your loved one while coping at home during the crisis.

Finding a way to honor your loved one, whether online, at a future date or outside from a distance, we hope you are able to find support from your friends and family. Though hugs have to wait, we hope you find connection to get you through this very strange time.

A note to our readers: This is a dynamic situation that is changing and evolving all of the time. For the most up-to-date information, visit the CDC website.

Photo by Luca Florio

Solace is now Tulip Cremation, the nation’s largest online direct cremation services provider, delivering world-class and compassionate care 24/7.

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