Where Do I Start?
The death of a loved one, especially when unexpected, can often leave us blindsided wondering what to do. So we created this “Where do I Start” page to help answer many of the common questions you may have at this time.
If you are not finding the answers to the questions you need, please call us at any time at (480) 626-6363.
What do I do when my loved one passes?
Deaths usually occur in one of three settings: a hospital, nursing home, or at a residence. When death occurs in a hospital or nursing home, the medical staff will determine that a death has occurred and report it accordingly. At such a time, the family will be asked to provide the name of the funeral home of their choice for the medical staff to contact.
When a death occurs at home and Hospice is involved contact them immediately to report the death and request their nurse to come and perform their necessary duties. Once the nurse has been contacted they may call our staff to coordinate transferring your loved one into our care. We make every effort to be at your home within an hour of receiving the call, unless specifically asked to wait to an appointed time.
In the absence of hospice, you will need to contact your local authorities to report of your loved ones passing. Per protocol they will send first responders to your home. If necessary (no history of illness) the local medical examiner may be requested to investigate the death. Personnel at your home will let you know when they are ready for our staff to transfer your loved one into our care and will continue to secure the your residence until we arrive.
Again, we make every effort to be at your home within an hour of receiving your call, unless specifically asked to wait to an appointed time.
What do I do if the death occurs away from home?
Do not hesitate to contact us. A funeral director will coordinate arrangements with an out of town funeral service provider. They will tend to the details necessary for the care and safe return of your loved one into our care.
What do I need to know when I first contact A Wise Choice?
Please know that our funeral directors are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week including holidays. You can expect our funeral directors to ask a number of questions, including the whereabouts of the person who has passed away and some vital statistical information. The funeral director will also coordinate a time that is convenient for you and your family to gather at one of our chapels to complete the arrangement process.
What can I expect at the Arrangement Conference?
You will meet with one of our funeral directors, who will walk you through every step of planning the appropriate service for your loved one. We will review all the options available to help plan services that will best serve your needs. Our knowledgeable staff will take care of as many of the details as possible, leaving you time to be with your family and reflect on your loved one’s life. Please set aside approximately two hours for the arrangement conference.
The following is a list of the items we will cover:
What are the items we will covered at the arrangement conference?
- Vital statistics for the Death Certificate (including Social Security #)
- Date, time, and location of services
- Cemetery needs
- Casket options (for cremation or burial)
- Outer burial containers (required by most cemeteries)
- Urn options (if selecting cremation)
- Flowers, obituaries, memorial programs, register books, DVDs, etc.
- Any other way we can make the services special for you
At the end of the arrangement conference we will provide an itemized statement of all the services and merchandise you desire. We will also provide information regarding payment of funeral services.
What will I need to bring to the Arrangement Conference?
- Social Security Card
- Military discharge paperwork (known as DD-214)
Photographs for obituary, hair & makeup, DVD tribute (40-50), etc.
- Clothing and undergarments for your loved one
- Glasses or any jewelry for them to wear
- Paperwork pertaining to insurance policies you desire to use
- Anything you feel will help us plan your tribute
My loved one served in the Armed Forces, what can I expect?
It is a great honor for us to care for those who served honorably in our Armed Forces. With the proper military discharge paperwork your loved one is entitled to:
- United States flag
- Taps and flag presentation by branch of service
- Burial at the National Memorial Cemetery of Arizona
They will provide:
- Cemetery plot
- Opening & closing the space
- Standard government liner
- Bronze grave marker
- Use of shelter for 30 minute service
Cemetery is only open Monday – Friday
If interred at a private cemetery you still are entitled to a military grave maker