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Our full service facility, includes three chapels, two reception areas, our own on-site cremation chambers and 120 developed acres of beautiful cemetery grounds.

Unique Funeral for a Unique Woman: The Legacy of Barbara Bush

Modern funerals can be tailored to fit a unique personality and honor the unique life that was lived. Recently, there have been some wonderful examples of this in the funerals of public figures: notably, former first lady Barbara Bush who passed away in April.

Although she never held office, the legacy of family she leaves behind is extremely powerful. Her longstanding marriage to President George H.W. Bush has been well documented. He was her first kiss, and their 73-year marriage —the longest of any presidential couple — produced four sons and two daughters. Having lost a daughter to leukemia in childhood, the family pushed through this tragedy and went on to be one of the most powerful families in the United States. While first lady, Bush worked tirelessly to promote the cause of literacy, and at her funeral, her husband wore socks with books on them as an acknowledgment of the work that was so important to her.

Barbara Bush was a beloved public figure, so it’s not surprising there was so much interest in her memorialization. A public visitation was attended by nearly 8,000 people, with many wearing blue, Bush’s favorite color. The funeral was attended by 1,500 guests, including heads of states, dignitaries, former US presidents and first ladies, and the current first lady, Melania Trump. Political differences were set aside as people came together to honor a woman who was well respected by all.

The service itself was touching and planned to perfectly reflect the life she lived. Held at her home church, St. Martin’s Episcopal in Houston, it featured a choir singing My Country Tis of Thee. Bush’s pastor spoke, as did her son, Jeb, who read a love letter she’d once received from her husband, George. There were also eulogies by her biographer and a longtime friend. There were tears as well as laughter as family and friends recalled the former first lady’s good-natured humor.

During the service, an ivory pall graced her casket. At the viewing and after the service, it was adorned with a large spray of her favorite flowers, including pink and yellow roses, snapdragons and hydrangeas. Her eight grandsons were pallbearers, and the final song of the service was Joyful Joyful We Adore Thee, sung by the congregation. Bush was laid to rest in a gated plot at her husband’s presidential library at Texas A&M University, just outside Houston.

Not every funeral will be as elaborate as Barbara Bush’s, but each can be tailored to honor the unique life that was lived. At Mountain View, we’re happy to help you preplan your end-of-life services. Call 253.948.9895 today to make an appointment with a preplanning advisor, or visit our website for your free preplanning guide.

Why is a Reception Important?

For many of us, being uncomfortable about death means that a funeral service is something to be endured instead of a meaningful time to reflect and say goodbye.

Some people don’t want a funeral service at all and don’t understand why a reception matters. In reality, the reception can be a vital part of the healing process.

The funeral itself typically happens very quickly, and the planning can be extremely stressful as family members work through their grief while trying to make decisions they hope would please their loved one.

Ideally, the service will be meaningful and life-honoring, but it is often so emotional that family members may feel they’re collectively holding their breath until it is over. At the reception, they finally get a chance to breathe and have time to look around and appreciate the people who have come to pay their respects in a setting that’s far more relaxed than the visitation or funeral service.

The reception provides an important opportunity for connection, serving as a family reunion of sorts for loved ones who may not see each other often. As they come together to support each other in a time of grief, they’ll tell stories about the person who has died. New bonds will form, old connections will be reinforced, and the family will benefit from hearing the memories of others who had a different perspective on a cherished family member. This interaction can help people begin to find closure, and set them on the path toward healing.

At Mountain View, we understand the importance of a funeral reception. We have beautiful, comfortable reception areas and a wide range of catering options so that you can plan a meaningful gathering. Call 253.948.9895 to learn how we can help you plan a personalized reception.

Funeral Flowers: Is It Possible to Get Them Wrong?

Sending flowers after someone has died is a thoughtful gesture as well as a longstanding tradition. The right flowers are very meaningful and can be comforting to the bereaved family.

But is it possible to get it wrong when you’re sending funeral flowers? In a word, yes. The missteps people sometimes make include:

  • Sending an inappropriate arrangement. Large standing sprays and showy arrangements are only appropriate if you’re a close friend or family member, or if you’re sending the arrangement on behalf of the company for which the person worked. If you’re an acquaintance or coworker, it’s best to stick with a vase arrangement, flowering plant or gift basket.
  • Forgetting to send a card. It can be hard to know what to say when someone has lost a loved one. It’s important, though, to say something, even if it’s just a heartfelt, “I’m sorry for your loss” or “My thoughts are with you during this difficult time.”
  • Thinking you can only send flowers to the funeral home. Funerals happen quickly after a death, and there are cases in which you might not even know about the funeral until after it has passed. However, this doesn’t mean you can’t still send flowers. They’ll be comforting to the family if you send them to the house after the service is over. In fact, flowers that come to the house are often more fully appreciated after the initial rush of attention is over. Feel free to think beyond cut flowers, perhaps sending a gift basket or a potted plant that can be enjoyed for years to come.
  • Neglecting to think about the person you’re honoring. When you’re ordering flowers, never lose sight of the person whose memory you intend to honor. If you know the person’s favorite colors or flowers, incorporate those aspects into the arrangement. If you are familiar with favorite songs or poems, use a line or two in the card if it’s appropriate. The most comforting thing for a bereaved family is to know that people truly cared about their loved one.
  • Using a florist unfamiliar with the funeral home. It can be tempting to order from a “big box” florist, but local florists who create and hand-deliver fresh arrangements are far preferable to corporations that ship from warehouses. Often, the funeral home will be able to point you in the right direction and may even be able to help you order the flowers.

At Mountain View, we understand the importance of choosing the right flowers to send to a funeral. We can help you choose the perfect arrangement, and we make it easy to order right from our website. Call 253.948.9895 to learn more.

Your Loved One, Remembered: Life's Journey Biography

Funeral Home Lakewood

At Mountain View Funeral Home and Memorial Park, we are committed to helping families honor their loved one’s lives. It’s why we provide Signature Servicesâ„  that allow you to customize end-of-life services in a unique, life-honoring way. With services ranging from musical tributes to keepsake jewelry, one of our favorites is the Life’s Journey Biography.

We offer Life’s Journey Biography as a complimentary service for families who would like to have a written history of their loved one’s life, along with pictures and video that will evoke happy memories while preserving special memories for generations to come.

The Life’s Journey Biography is professionally written and based on information we gather from family members and friends of the person who has died. It’s easy to share because it’s presented online as well as hand delivered in a booklet. When you’re planning your loved one’s funeral, be sure to ask your counselor about this meaningful complimentary service. You can also incorporate it when preplanning for your own end-of-life service.

Preplanning is just another way to ensure that your ceremony truly reflects your life and personality, and it’s easy to incorporate Signature Servicesâ„  that you find meaningful. Preplanning will also make it easier on your family because they won’t be faced with challenging decisions during an already stressful time, and they won’t have to wonder what kind of service you would have wanted.

At Mountain View, we’re proud to offer unique touches such as the Life’s Journey Biography. Call us at 253.948.9895 to learn more about what we have to offer. You can also visit our website for more information and to request your free preplanning guide.

A Day Like No Other: Memorial Day at Mountain View

Memorial Day is an important holiday set aside to honor the sacrifices of the men and women who have died while serving in our nation’s armed forces.

It began in the days following the Civil War, when there was a push to designate a day to decorate the graves of fallen soldiers on both sides of the conflict. Decoration Day was designated for that purpose in 1868. The term “Memorial Day” began to be widely used in the 1880s, but it wasn’t until 1968 that Memorial Day was officially established as the last Monday in May, honoring troops from all of our nation’s wars.

Memorial Day is especially important to Mountain View Memorial Park. Established in 1915, this is the final resting place of thousands of veterans, many of whom gave their lives in service of our country. There are five burial sections set aside for veterans, and those who have been honorably discharged are provided with complimentary burial spaces.

Monuments at Mountain View reflect all branches of the military, and there is a Veterans Memorial on the grounds. In addition to a Garden of Honor, this space holds monuments to Army General John Shalikashvili, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and Supreme Allied Commander from 1993-1997, and Army Sergeant Llewellyn Chilson, the second-highest decorated enlisted soldier in World War II.

Veterans are held in high regard at Mountain View and are entitled to special honors at their funerals, including honor guard members, a flag-draped casket, and a rifle volley. One of the most memorable moments in a veteran’s funeral is the folding of the flag before it’s presented to the family. The meaningful and solemn ceremony in which the flag is carefully folded 13 times is a final honor for a veteran’s life. When the flag is folded on Memorial Day, it is especially reminiscent of this beautiful gesture.

Mountain View Memorial Park and the Pierce County Veterans’ Advisory Council invite all members of the public to the official 2018 Joint Services Memorial Day Ceremony on Monday, May 28 at 2pm in the Garden of Honor.

For those who would like to use the opportunity to decorate a veteran’s grave, flowers will be available for purchase on Monday. Free hot dogs will also be provided. For more information about Memorial Day or to learn more about the services available at Mountain View, call 253.948.9895 or visit our website.

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