I have researched and prepared an information sheet, "Essential Elements of Information (EEI) for Military Veterans and Next-of-Kin". It is a short document containing basic information for surviving spouses and/or next of kin with regard to funeral/interment and cremation/inurnment arrangements. It is designed to assist the surviving spouse and family members and guide them through those first few difficult days following the death of a spouse.
I did this because I think there is a need for this information in a clear, handy, easy-to-understand format at a time of great stress for our families. My goal was to prepare a useful, two-page document containing only the essential information. As you know, there is a myriad of details involved in arranging a funeral. References to additional, detailed information are included in the paper. This document is designed to be 'first aid'-a listing of the names, addresses, and phone numbers of key people and organizations to contact for assistance in planning and arranging the funeral/inurnment of a military veteran or his spouse in a military cemetery.
Considerable research and care has been invested in this document in order to meet three criteria:
+ Brevity-one page, two sides
+ Accuracy-the latest copy of each of the three sources referenced in the document was used to verify all the information including telephone numbers and services provided by each agency listed.
+ Utility-the document was designed to encourage each of us to discuss, BEFOREHAND, our desires, plans, and wishes with regard to our own and our spouse's funeral with our spouse AND our next-of-kin. Two items on the form are left blank in order that each family may add specific information based on their own location & situation.
In addition to the documentation listed in the
references, I made an appointment at the DeVol Funeral Home,
The DeVol representative made one other important
point: burial at
The information contained in the document has been vetted. Six classmates and widowed spouses reviewed the draft and made comments, corrections and suggestions for improvement. Their responses have been incorporated into the final version. That product is Part 2 of this message. It is being made available to all members of our Class of 1958 and their families.
Finally, no document can be a substitute for a frank and open discussion with our family members of our personal wishes and plans. The purpose of this effort is to provide each of us with a brief, accurate, and timely reference. After discussing its content with your family, I recommend that it be kept in a safe location accessible to our surviving family members to assist them during those first few, difficult days.
All the best,