When Death Occurs

What to expect from us after the death of a loved one.

The overwhelming feelings of despair, disbelief, shock, and numbness caused by the passing of a loved one cannot be conveyed by mere words. Even when the death is expected, the pain that loss brings can still be devastating.  In truth, no one is completely prepared for the death of someone close to their heart.

During this difficult time, there are decisions to be made quickly, arrangements to be coordinated, and many things to be considered for your loved one’s arrangements. We understand this may feel overwhelming, especially with the grief you are feeling over the loss. Please know that we are here to help and support you. 

On this page, we have put together helpful information to guide you through this process.


If your loved one passes away while in the care of a facility such as a nursing home or a hospital, the staff from the facility should have previously discussed with family members who to call in the event of your loved ones death. If so, they will then notify the funeral home when you are ready for them to. In the event that you are absent at the time of death, they should call you first, and then notify the appropriate authorities themselves. In Saline County, if your loved one passes away at the nursing home or in the emergency room, they are supposed to notify the coroner's office. The coroner's office will investigate any questionable circumstances. If there are no questionable circumstances (most deaths) then the coroner's office will release the facility to notify the funeral home. This process usually is concluded within an hour. 

In larger cities, this process will take longer. If your loved one passes away in a larger city, please call us directly as the notification from the hospital could take as long as 24 hours. If you have not spoken to the staff about who you would like notified, be sure the nurses at the nurses station are aware of your wishes, and they will make the necessary contacts (office of decadent affairs, morgue, ect. or the funeral home).

Something else to consider with hospital deaths is that they are required by the state to request tissue donation. Stricklin Funeral Home does not have a recommendation to families.  This is a deeply personal decision. However, if your loved one is a candidate for donation and you wish to decline, inform the nurses station of that decision. Organ and tissue banks can delay the release of your loved one up to 24 hours. Something commonly misunderstood when it comes to donation is that when your loved one has died, you can donate their organs. This is entirely false. For organ donation to take place your loved one must only be brain dead. In most cases, if the heart has stopped beating, organ donation is no longer an option. What is still an option is tissue donation. This consists of eyes for corneas, heart for valves, long bone, and skin are the most common. For more information on tissue donation click here.

If the death occurs at home while under hospice care, you will contact the hospice provider first. They will come to your home and assist you further. If not under hospice care and your loved one has been seen by a doctor in the last 72 hours, you may call the funeral home, and we can assist you from there. If your loved one has not been seen by a doctor recently, the coroner's office will need to be notified. They will come to your location promptly to assure things are handled properly. You may call County Dispatch at (618) 252-8661 for Saline County or you may call us, and we can contact the coroner's office for you.

In the event that no one was present at the time of death, you will need to contact the police at (618) 252-8661 before moving the deceased to another location.

You may call us at any time and in any situation to assist you with contacting the appropriate agency.


 We will collect information from you to facilitate the transfer of your loved one’s remains into our care. You will be asked about embalming as authorization is required to embalm anyone. Authorization is also required to cremate. The funeral director is required to discuss embalming prior to the procedure being performed. Only under certain circumstances is embalming required, and it is never forced upon anyone by the state. When asked about embalming, please feel free to ask any questions at this time. Embalming is necessary to have a viewing at services or to extend the burial past 48 hours (unless refrigeration is utilized).

During this call, you will be asked about a time for making arrangements. You will typically be informed about things that you need to bring with you to the arrangement conference. Items like the clothing your loved one will wear for the burial or cremation, their social security number, military discharge papers, a picture for the obituary and possibly pictures for a video tribute. As far as clothing is considered, we use a full set of undergarments (T-shirt, underwear and socks, or bra, panties and socks/pantyhose). Shoes are optional. If your loved one has dentures, they are needed prior to embalming. It is also helpful to know about men's facial hair. Feel free to call us whenever you feel the need, day or night. Remember that we are here to listen to you, help you, and guide you during this difficult and trying time.


In your first meeting with us, we will discuss the arrangements for your loved one’s burial or cremation. We will collect information for the death certificate, writing the obituary and various other forms of paperwork. We will also cover a variety of service details such as your wishes for services, officiant, location of services and music to name a few. Commonly the arrangement conference will last a couple of hours. You will have the opportunity at this time to select merchandise of your choosing and will never be pressured by Stricklin Funeral Home staff to purchase something more expensive. All funeral homes are regulated by the Federal Trade Commision to ensure that grieving families are not subjected to undue pressure regarding services and/or merchandise. We are required to provide you with a copy of our General Price List, and we are also required by law to provide you with an itemized copy of the Statement of Goods and Services when arrangements are concluded. You should never have to question what the charges will be after the arrangements have been made.


Sometimes it is necessary to meet with the cemetery personnel to arrange for the desired burial space or to purchase burial space. We can/will accompany you to make certain that your wishes are communicated and carried out with cemetery personnel. This is only needed when there is not a marker already installed at the cemetery.

STEP FIVE: ORDER FLOWERS (when having services)

Flowers are something that we at Stricklin Funeral Home would prefer families take care of themselves. All florists have a unique style and different options in stock. We cannot know or adequately relay to you what flowers are in inventory from each provider, nor can we know what your tastes and preferences are.  We certainly can and will order flowers for you, but the florist is best suited to relay their particular talents and abilities to you. We also do not make recommendations as we support all of our local florists. 

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