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Dignity Memorial Honors Military Funeral Traditions
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The personal sacrifices made by members of the armed forces cannot be overestimated. We deeply appreciate those who have served our country with courage and selflessness.  Dignity Memorial® providers are honored to do our part in turn by caring for military veterans and their families.

If you are a veteran or the spouse, parent or child of a veteran, it’s important to be aware of the benefits that may be available to you. It is also important to know that these benefits do not come automatically and must be requested in advance, typically through applications and forms outlining service history and burial intent. We have many years of planning funerals for veterans and can help with this process. We can also help ensure that you or your veteran loved one is honored with a proper military funeral as well as personal touches that reflect his or her unique personality.

Dignity Memorial® professionals are privileged to coordinate the military funeral honors ceremony befitting of one’s service to the United States. Whether buried in a VA national cemetery, a state veteran’s cemetery or a private cemetery, we ensure that all veterans receive the military funeral honors they are entitled to.

Military funeral honors and protocol

U.S. law mandates the rendering of military funeral honors for an eligible veteran, if requested by the family, at no cost by the Department of Defense. Your local Dignity Memorial provider will help your family request military funeral honors and ensure the following benefits are made available.

Folding and presentation of the flag

An esteemed military funeral custom, the folding and presentation of the flag is provided to your family at no cost. All veterans receiving military honors are entitled by law to a minimum of 2 members of the Armed Forces as their honor guard detail. At least one of the honor guard members will be from the veteran’s service branch. The representative of the veteran’s parent service branch will present the flag to the next of kin or, if none is available, a designated friend.

Playing of “Taps”

The playing of “Taps” is an emotionally moving and patriotic military funeral tradition. As buglers are becoming increasingly rare, a ceremonial bugle may be used in lieu of a live performance of “Taps.” A high quality recording of “Taps” performed at Arlington National Cemetery during a service was made and is discreetly hidden in the bell part of a bugle. The service member holds the ceremonial bugle as though being played. This tool offers both the image and beautiful rendition of “Taps” being performed in honor of the veteran. If preferred, Dignity Memorial professionals are happy to assist in locating a local musician to perform “Taps.”

Military funeral honors eligibility

Military funeral honors are available to eligible members of the Army, Marines, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard and National Guard.

Those eligible for military funeral honors, as set forth by the Department of Defense, include:

  • Military members who died while on active duty or in the Selected Reserve
  • Former military members who served on active duty or in the Selected Reserve and were discharged under other than dishonorable conditions
  • Former military members who completed at least one term of enlistment or period of initial obligated service in the Selected Reserve and were discharged under other than dishonorable conditions

Provision of a headstone or marker

The Veterans Administration will provide a headstone, marker or medallion without cost at the request of the veteran’s family. Dignity Memorial professionals can assist you with this request as well. Please note, although the headstone or marker has no cost, there may be a cost associated with placing the tribute if done in a private cemetery.

Additionally, Dignity Memorial providers offer special benefits and discounts on services and merchandise for veterans.

Plan with an expert & understand your benefits

With no obligation and at no cost to you, we’ll walk you through the details of advanced funeral planning for veterans and help you understand your options. A Dignity Memorial® planning professional can give insight into the many choices you have to fund your plan, as well as burial benefits provided by the U.S Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), allowing you to take control of funeral costs and lock in current prices.

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