Burial Services

A traditional service for burial, entombment or cremation, is usually the service of choice. R Lee Williams & Son Funeral Home and Crematory believe's in the traditional funeral, because it best serves the needs of family and friends.

The traditional funeral service may include the following:

  • Casket
  • Transfer of the deceased to the funeral home
  • Embalming
  • Dressing, cosmetology and other care of the deceased
  • Professional support and administrative staff assistance
  • Use of visitation rooms
  • General use of the facilities for the service and arrangements
  • Funeral service
  • Use of funeral coach
  • Limousine
  • Utility car
  • Register book
  • Acknowledgment cards
  • Memorial folders or prayer cards

The traditional service is a meaningful expression for the family, and it gives friends and associates an opportunity to offer their tributes in the way of flowers or memorials to churches or organizations. Generally, a member of the clergy or other person chosen by the family conducts a service of remembrance. We encourage the active participation of the family in helping plan this part of the service. Many times family members take part by giving a reading, singing or assisting the clergy..

Direct Burial

The body is buried shortly after death, usually in a simple container. No viewing or visitation is involved, so no embalming is necessary. A memorial service may be held at the graveside or later. Direct burial usually costs less than the "traditional," full-service funeral. Costs include the funeral home's basic services fee, as well as transportation and care of the body, the purchase of a casket or burial container and a cemetery plot or crypt. If the family chooses to be at the cemetery for the burial, the funeral home charges an additional fee for a graveside service.

Embalming Policy

Florida law does not require embalming. However, embalming will be necessary if you select certain funeral arrangements, such as a funeral with a viewing. If you do not want embalming, you have the right to choose an arrangement, such as direct cremation or immediate burial, that does not require embalming. R Lee Williams & Son Funeral Home and Crematory will obtain written authorization to embalm by the immediate next of kin, before we embalm.



Burial FAQ

What is opening and closing, and why is it so expensive?
Opening and closing fees can include up to and beyond 50 separate services provided by the cemetery.  Typically, the opening and closing fees include administration and permanent record keeping (determining ownership, obtaining permission, and the completion of other documentation which may be required, entering the interment particulars in the interment register, maintaining all legal files), opening and closing the grave (locating the grave and laying out the boundaries, excavating and filling the interment space), installation and removal of the lowering device, placement and removal of artificial grass dressing and coco-matting at the grave site, leveling, tamping, re-grading and sodding the grave site, and leveling and re-sodding the grave if the earth settles. 

Can we dig our own grave to avoid the charge for opening and closing?
The actual opening and closing of the grave is just one component of the opening and closing fee.  Due to safety issues which arise around the use of machinery on cemetery property, and the protection of other gravesites, the actual opening and closing of the grave is conducted by cemetery grounds personnel only.

Why is having a place to visit so important?
To remember, and to be remembered.  A permanent memorial in a cemetery provides a focal point for remembrance and memorializing the deceased.  Memorialization of the dead is a key component in almost every culture.  Psychologists say that remembrance practices serve an important emotional function for survivors by helping them bring closure, which allows the healing process to begin. The provision of a permanent resting place is an important part of this process.

What happens when a cemetery runs out of land?
When a cemetery runs out of land, it will continue to operate and serve the community.  Most cemeteries have crematoriums, and some historic cemeteries even offer guided tours.

In a hundred years, will this cemetery still be there?
We think of cemetery lands as being in perpetuity.  There are cemeteries throughout the world that have been in existence for hundreds of years.

How soon after a death must an individual be buried?
There is no law that states a specific time-span for burial.  Considerations that will affect the timeline include: the need to secure all permits and authorizations; notification of family and friends; preparation of cemetery site, and religious considerations.  Public heath laws may limit the maximum amount of time allowed to pass prior to final disposition.  Contact your local funeral provider for more details.

Does a body have to be embalmed before it is buried?
No.  Embalming is generally a choice, one which depends on factors like if there is to be an open casket viewing of the body, or if there will be an extended time between death and internment.  Public health laws may require embalming if the body is going to be transported by air or rail.

What options are available besides ground burial?
Besides ground burial, some cemeteries offer interment in lawn crypts or entombment in mausoleums.  In addition, most cemeteries provide options for those who have selected cremation.  These often include placement of cremated remains in a niche of a columbarium or interment in an urn space. 

What are burial vaults and grave liners?
These are the outside containers into which the casket is placed.  Burial vaults are designed to protect the casket and may be made of a variety of materials, including concrete, stainless steel, galvanized steel, copper, bronze, plastic, or fiberglass.  A grave liner is a lightweight version of a vault which keeps the grave surface from sinking in.

Must I purchase a burial vault?
Most large, active cemeteries have regulations that require the use of a basic grave liner for maintenance and safety purposes.  Either a grave liner or a burial vault will satisfy these requirements.  Some smaller rural or churchyard cemeteries do not require use of a container to surround the casket in the grave.

There are alternatives to burial. See Cremation Services