Scattering At Sea: What You Need to Know

Posted on July 2, 2020 by Crystal Van Orsdel under Funeral Planning, Unique Funeral Services
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The sea may have played a role in your loved one’s life. They may have enjoyed long walks on the beach or days spent fishing. A funeral allows the living to say their final goodbyes to those who left footprints on their lives through ways that showcase the best of their loved ones.

Van Orsdel offers special ceremonies to scatter cremated remains at sea. Our staff can design a private ceremony, and if your family is unable to personally honor your loved one’s last wish due to illness or travel restrictions, we can perform this ceremony for you.

Requirements for scattering at sea:

  • Must occur three nautical miles from shore
  • Requires an airplane or boat rental
  • Biodegradable urns are required or urns that can sink all the way to the bottom of the ocean
  • Flowers and wreaths must decompose easily
  • A permit is needed for pet remains

While there are regulations for sea scattering, the ceremony for your loved one does not have any rules. You can leave everything to us and just show up, or have our dedicated staff perform the service without any attendees. Many choose to have a mariner’s farewell ceremony, in which biblical verses and prayers that focus on the sea are read aloud. Once these prayers are said, the ship’s bell tolls eight times. You can also recite prayers, play music, and enjoy the sounds of the sea.

If you choose to use an urn or throw flowers into the sea as a way of saying goodbye, please make sure they are biodegradable. Around 55 percent of people are now choosing cremation as their final wish. Scattering at sea has become increasingly popular, and planning ahead with Van Orsdel helps the process go smoothly.

Guests should be dressed appropriately for going in a boat or airplane. South Florida is known for largely unpredictable weather and any trip has the potential for choppy seas and turbulence. Wear non-skid footwear and take any motion sickness pills before leaving the shore. Tie long hair up in a bun.

A day spent on the waves is good for the mind. A scattering at sea allows families to see the beauty of life all around them and feel at peace with their loved one’s passing, expected or unexpected. This type of funeral service is very healing for the living and provides immense comfort. If your family member loved the ocean while they were alive, know that they would have loved the ceremony. And finally, military honors can be arranged for veterans.

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