Today is the day we set aside to honor American veterans – those valiant soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines and Coast Guardsmen of the U.S. Armed Forces – who all share a dedication to the defense of freedom. For generations, veterans have honored us with this sacrifice, and so all of us here at Allen Memorial Home take our responsibility to honor them in death very seriously. We work hand in hand with their family and friends to create a personalized tribute that celebrates the veteran’s life, passion, and special moments. There are a number of meaningful ways to pay tribute to these heroes, and we offer all of these options here at Allen Memorial Home.
First, upon the request of a surviving family member, all honorably discharged veterans – regardless of rank or whether or not they were on active duty – qualify for military funeral honors. A U.S. flag is provided for their casket or urn in honor of their military service and is given to the next-of-kin after the funeral. The military funeral ceremony itself consists of the folding and presenting of the American flag by two uniformed military officers and the customary playing of Taps by a bugler. Additionally, the family of the deceased will receive a special certificate from the President of the United States, known as the Presidential Memorial Certificate. This document further expresses recognition of the veteran’s dedication to his or her country. Many are also eligible for special funeral and burial benefits due to their honorable service.
In addition to military funeral honors, another particularly good way to highlight a veteran’s life is to create a funeral memorial program. As part of this program, you can incorporate pictures of them in uniform as well as information about his or her military experience, including years of active service, tour(s) of duty, and any medals or honors received. Many choose to create a memorial program that provides a look of their friend or family member’s life on a deeper level. If that’s your choice, know you can include a few of your loved one’s favorite stories from their time in active duty. This is a wonderful way to highlight the veteran’s special qualities and the impact he or she had on others.
Receptions are also becoming an increasingly popular choice for all farewells, including for those who served in the military. We have reception locations for those of you in Endicott or Binghamton. We can offer full catering or something simple, and many families choose to offer a favorite food or drink of their loved one. It’s one more way to make the tribute all the more special.
The best gift family and friends can give to a deceased veteran at his or her death is a tribute which truly celebrates who they were as an individual. We can help you create a unique and meaningful service that focuses not on the veteran’s death, but on the honorable life he or she lived.