Funerals and Burial Customs

We look at some of the funerals and burial customs of the past and present.

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Muslims, Hindus and Sikhs have been forced to abandon their long-standing practices around mourning the dead as COVID-19 overwhelms the country. What are they doing now?

By Natasha Mikles

Obituaries do more than just let the world know someone died. They're a chance to pay tribute to someone, advocate for a cause or even settle a score.

By Dave Roos

Military funeral honors, involving a flag presentation and the playing of taps, can be very meaningful to the families of loved ones who served in the U.S. military. Who is eligible and how do you request these honors?

By Dave Roos


Many Ghanians honor their dead by burying them in vibrant works of art made by skillful master carpenters. These fantasy coffins are shaped like everything from elaborate fish and lions to limos and even sneakers.

By Mark Mancini

Several crematoriums around the U.S. are holding days when people may scatter ashes of loved ones on the grounds of the funeral home – or otherwise dispose of them – for free.

By Nathan Chandler

Few rules on funeral processions are enshrined in law; most are just customs. But that doesn't mean you should break them.

By Melanie Radzicki McManus

A tombstone that features the deceased hobbies? Sure. A personalized playlist playing during the celebration of life? Check. Yep, the business of death isn't quite so gloomy anymore.

By Adina Solomon


Cities have protocols for making sure everyone — even the nameless — has an eternal resting place.

By Adina Solomon

More people are opting for cremation over traditional burials and in some states they can choose a water cremation.

By Michelle Konstantinovsky

Depending on which state you live in, you may be able to bury your loved ones in your garden. But there are some things to think about.

By Dave Roos

Coping with the loss of a friend or family member is difficult, no matter what your faith. All religions have funeral rites and traditions for dealing with death, and Islam is no different. What are some Muslim funeral traditions?

By Becky Striepe


If you don't live amid the soaring peaks of the Himalayas, you may not have heard of this unique human burial practice. So, how does sky burial work?

By Robert Lamb