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Funeral Director

Career Highlights

  • Make funeral preparations
  • Organize and schedule burial

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Career Summary

Funeral DirectorFuneral directors have the responsibility of setting up funeral services for those who have passed away. They first interview the family in regards to funeral arrangements. This may include speaking with clergy members or other people who manage the final preparations of the remains.

Sometimes, detailed instructions for the funeral were left through a will or other means by the deceased. Funeral directors assist by establishing the location, dates, and times of wakes, memorial services, and burial. They arrange for a hearse to carry the body to the funeral home or mortuary. They also comfort the family and friends of the deceased.

Funeral directors also help prepare obituary notices, arrange for pallbearers, schedule the opening and closing of a grave with a representative of the cemetery, decorate, and prepare the sites of all services, and provide transportation. Some funeral directors also are trained and licensed embalmers. Embalming is the preservative process through which the body is prepared for burial.

Funeral services may take place in a home, house of worship, or funeral home, or at the gravesite. Some services are nonreligious, but because they often reflect the religion of the family, funeral directors must be familiar with many faiths, ethnic groups, and fraternal organizations. Funeral directors handle the paperwork involved with the personís death, such as submitting papers to State authorities. Some may help family members apply for veteransí burial benefits, and they notify the Social Security Administration of the death.

Directors strive to foster a cooperative spirit and friendly attitude among employees as well a compassionate demeanor toward the families. Increasingly, funeral directors also are involved in helping individuals adapt to changes in their lives following a death, through aftercare services and or support-group activities.

Salary

$45000*

Education

Requires a degree in:

  • Mortuary Science

Career Skills

  • Medical knowledge
  • Business
  • Counseling
  • Event planning

Additional Information

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*Salary ranges based on location, experience, and demand. This number represents a rough nation-wide average.