Questions About Burial Services

We’ve provided a list of answers to questions we frequently receive regarding our services and other activities related to funerals. If you don't see the answer to your question here, feel free to contact us. We'd be happy to give you more information and clarify any of your concerns.


Is Diehl-Whittaker Funeral Service owned by a publicly traded corporation?

No! Diehl-Whittaker Funeral Service is a privately held corporation, of which, the Diehl family is the majority shareholder, and key members of the Diehl-Whittaker team are minority shareholders.

What does a funeral director do?
  • Arranges for the deceased to be picked up and transported to the funeral home (anytime day or night)
  • Meets with the family; assisting them with completing arrangements for the funeral
  • Notifies the proper authorities (physician or coroner); prepare and file the death certificate with the appropriate health department
  • Sanitize and embalm the decedent
  • Prepare the decedent for viewing
  • Coordinate with clergy and church personnel, schedule the preparation of the grave and burial vault, order necessary goods and services (e.g. casket, motorcycle escort, flowers, etc.)
When a death occurs, what should I do?

If the death occurred in a medical facility (hospital or nursing home), instruct the facility to call the funeral service of your choice. If the death occurs at a residence, and a hospice or a Home Health Care provider is not involved, but the person is under a physician’s care, and family and friends are present, do not call the funeral home first. Call 9-1-1 and report the death to the police and/or the fire department EMS. The police will conduct their normal investigation, notifying the medical examiner’s office and/or the attending physician, before calling the funeral home.

Should I choose burial or cremation?

Burial in a casket is the most common method of disposition of remains in the United States, although entombment also occurs. Cremation is increasingly selected because it can be less expensive and allows for the memorial service to be held at a more convenient time in the future when relatives and friends can come together.

A funeral service followed by cremation need not be any different from a funeral service followed by a burial. Usually, cremated remains are placed in urn before being committed to a final resting place. The urn may be buried, placed in an indoor or outdoor mausoleum or columbarium, or interred in a special urn garden that many cemeteries provide for cremated remains. The remains may also be scattered, according to state law.

When making funeral arrangements, what do I need to take to the funeral home?

When you come to the funeral home, it will be helpful to bring certain information with you. If you like, you can download and fill out the Personal Information Form ahead of time. This will allow our staff to enter your information quickly.

Why have a public viewing?

Viewing is a part of many cultural and ethnic traditions. Many grief specialists believe that viewing aids the grief process by helping the bereaved recognize the reality of death. Viewing is encouraged for children, as long as the process is explained and the activity is voluntary.

What is the purpose of embalming?

Embalming sanitizes and preserves the body, minimizing the possibility of disease transmission to those who might come into contact with the deceased. Embalming also makes it possible to lengthen the time between death and the final disposition, giving family members time to arrange and participate in the type of service most comforting to them.

Does a decedent have to be embalmed, according to law?

The Federal Trade Commission says, "Except in certain special cases, embalming is not required by law. Embalming may be necessary, however, if you select certain funeral arrangements, such as a funeral with viewing. If you do not want embalming, you usually have the right to choose an arrangement that does not require you to pay for it, such as direct cremation or immediate burial."

Will you place an obituary in the newspaper?

Yes! We will happily place the obituary in the newspaper at a cost no greater than it would be for you to place the obituary yourself.

Where do I get certified copies of the decedent’s death certificate?

The death certificate will be filed in the local jurisdiction where the death occurred. If you would like us to obtain certified copies of the death certificate for you, we will do so, at cost, plus any mailing or delivery fees.

What are my payment options, and when is payment due?

We accept cash, cashier’s checks, all major credit cards, and the assignment of verified life insurance policies. Tribute Loan financing (monthly payment option) is available to families whose credit is approved. Payment is due, or financing must be secured, before service is rendered.

Can I pre-pay for your services?

Absolutely! Pre-payment can be done as a single payment, or in monthly installments, without credit checks or medical exams (please see “Pre-Plan” tab above).

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