Frequently Asked Questions

Traditional Burial

Q: What does “traditional burial” mean; what services are considered to be a part of this type of funeral?
A: Traditional is ultimately relevant to the culture in which this question is asked. Most often in the United States, including the Pacific Northwest where Solie is based, this is intended to mean a funeral service with the casket present, followed by a graveside service and the lowering of the casket into the earth as the final event of the ceremony. These sorts of services may or may not include an open casket visitation prior to the funeral itself. If there is to be a visitation the funeral home has to embalm, dress, cosmetize and casket the remains. The family, or the decedent, may also not wish for a viewing in which case embalming isn’t always necessary, but a sealing casket should be selected for sanitary concerns. Your funeral director can guide you through all of these options as well during an arrangement or informational conference.

Q: When is embalming necessary?
A: Embalming is a necessary service if the family desires the following sorts of arrangements: Entombment in a wall (this requirement comes from most cemeteries that own the mausoleum), an open casket public service, when a decedent is to be flown home to another state or country for funeral services and repatriation back home, when the decedent has a known communicable disease and the family desires a viewing even if it is to be brief and private. For some of these arrangements it is possible to arrange for dry ice to be used as a temporary preservative measure, however a funeral home may impose a policy to require embalming instead.

Q: Can a decedent be dressed in the clothing they passed away in for the funeral?
A: No, this is highly discouraged out of sanitary concern. The clothing often is soiled when a person passes away. Your funeral director will ask you what is to be done with the clothing that your loved one passed away in during the arrangement process, and will encourage you to bring in a new outfit, including undergarments, for the viewing itself. Per company policy, Solie will not launder clothing from a removal; if it is soiled and you wish to have the clothing back, the funeral director may ask you to sign a waiver prior to release.

Q: Are all traditional services the same?
A: No. Personalization is an essential aspect to any funeral or memorial service, whether the disposition is cremation or burial. Personalization can mean many different things in a service and is not unique to burial services either: merchandise such as flowers, folders, dvd memorials and decorating the casket are all examples of personalization, in addition to the content and order of the service itself.

Q: Will Solie facilitate religious services other than Christian/Catholic or nonsectarian services that are traditional to other cultures?
A: Yes, we serve any and all faiths and religious communities in the Snohomish County area.

Q: Do traditional services always cost more?
A: The cost of a funeral is always based only on the choices you make during the arrangement process. Your funeral director will always be upfront about costs of services and merchandise as they discuss the arrangements with you to ensure there are no surprises. Certain circumstances require special services or merchandise: such as embalming for a visitation, or sealing caskets for mausoleums; and these come with the correspondence costs of each of those things.


Q: Can we have a traditional service with a cremation?
A: Yes absolutely. Again “traditional” is given its meaning by the family’s cultural and religious practices. However, visitations, funerals (at Solie’s chapel or the family’s religious facility), and viewings are all possible even when the decedent is to be cremated instead of buried. It makes no difference.

Q: Can we watch the cremation?
A: Yes. Solie is the only independent funeral home in the Snohomish County area that owns and operates its own on-site crematory. For a scheduling fee of $250 you may arrange for you and your family of up to 15 people to spend thirty minutes with your loved on prior to the cremation. Our downstairs chapel is ideally suited to this purpose and is directly adjacent to our crematory. You are welcome to participate in the beginning of the cremation to what-ever extant you are comfortable, or simply let our licensed and certified staff take care of it for you as you watch from the chapel.

Q: Can I watch the entire cremation?
A: Generally speaking, family’s only stay for the beginning of the cremation as the entire process itself takes between three and four hours. At different times during the cremation the chamber has to be opened and closed again for repositioning of the remains, and it is not recommended that the family be present for this.

Q: I plan on scattering the ashes, so I don’t need an urn, right?
A: Keep in mind that scattering cremated remains is a ceremony that you want to be pleasant. Depending on where and how you intend to scatter the remains there will be a few environmental factors to content with such as wind, the presence of the public, etc. To help ameliorate any of these potential difficulties Solie offers a variety of urns for these purposes including decorative scattering tubes, water soluble “journey” urns, and an engraved walnut scattering urn that may be kept as a personal keepsake after the scattering ceremony.

Q:  Where can I scatter cremated remains in Washington?
A:  You may scatter cremated remains on: National parks, after receiving permission from the Chief Park Ranger.  State trust uplands, after receiving permission from the regional manager for each scattering. Public navigable waters under state control, including Puget Sound, Strait of Juan de Fuca, rivers, streams, and lakes.  The Pacific Ocean beyond the mean lower low water mark. These scatterings must follow U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s General Permit for Burial at Sea. This includes reporting the burial within 30 days to the Regional Administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 10, 1200 Sixth Avenue, Seattle, WA 98101.  Private land, with the permission of the land owner.

Q:  What is the proper way to scatter cremated remains?
A:  Don’t drop or throw the urn containing the cremated remains. Scatter only the contents. Pour the cremated remains out of the container and dispose of the container separately. There is usually a second identification label and/or a numbered metal disc inside the container. Keep this and dispose of it separately with the container.