Honoring Your Loved One in the Tulsa Metro Area.

Losing a loved one is a difficult season to walk through. Often times, people desire opportunities to celebrate the legacy of their loved one long after they have passed. Tulsa has some incredible memorialization options for individuals and groups looking to honor loved ones in this way.

Sponsor a Memorial Bench at the Tulsa Zoo

The Tulsa zoo is one of the community’s most beloved places. With over half a million visitors each year, the Tulsa Zoo is a great place to celebrate your loved one’s legacy with a gift that will touch hundreds of thousands of lives each year.

One memorialization opportunity within the Tulsa zoo is through their Memorial Bench Program. This programs offers loved ones an opportunity to make a $1,500 contribution to the zoo and in return, you will receive a memorial bench that is placed on the zoos campus. The zoo welcomes both individual contributions as well as group contributions towards a Memorial Bench. Each bench comes with a customizable plaque to commemorate your loved one. This memorialization option is one that will be appreciated and well loved by zoo patrons. For more information about honorary gifts or the Memorial Bench program, please contact us at 918.669.6614 or visit the Tulsa Zoo web site.

Plant a Tree in Memory of Your Loved One Through Up with Trees

Another memorialization opportunity in the Tulsa area is the Commemorative Trees program by Up With Trees. This Organization has been serving the Tulsa community since 1976 and is passionate about planting a more beautiful tomorrow for future generations. Their vision makes this program such a great memorial option when considering ways to celebrate your loved one’s legacy for generations to come. For a $400 contribution, one of several different tree species can be planted in one of Up With Tree’s numerous arbor gardens scattered around the city. Each tree has a customized plaque placed around its base and the organization provides a 3 year-warranty on the both tree and plaque. They also handle all watering and general maintenance of the tree. Please contact Shawn Poynor at shawn@upwtihtrees.org or 918.610.8733 if you are interested in this option.

Adopt-A-Highway Through the Oklahoma Department of Transportation

For someone looking to participate in an activity in luau of a donation, consider adopting a highway in memory of your loved one through the “Adopt-A-Highway” program. Although this is a short term memorial, this organization’s mission has an incredible impact on our community and their vision will last for generations to come. This memorial option is a service project in memory of your friend or family member. Each “adoption” consists of a two-mile section of highway that you maintain multiple times a year for two years. If you are interested in this please contact the Beautification Office at 405.521.4037 or email beauty@odot.org.

Finding a way to celebrate the lives of our loved ones after they have passed is such a special thing. It’s a way for us to feel close and connected to them and it allows their memory and legacy to touch those in our community for years to come.

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Honoring Your Loved One in the Tulsa Metro Area

The Importance of a Funeral or Memorial Service When Choosing Cremation

If you or a loved one has chosen cremation for your or their Earthly remains, read this.  Even if you have selected cremation because of its simplicity or affordability, there is no need or reason to forego a funeral or some sort of memorial service.  Friends, coworkers and family members need closure that only a funeral or memorial can give.

The Life

No matter the final place of rest, whether ashes are to be scattered at a special location or placed in a grave site or other final resting place with a marker, this was a life that mattered to many and should be dignified in a formal and respectful manner.  Their existence touched many lives.  The memorial or funeral need not be religious nor political.   A memorial or funeral held in honor of one who chose cremation should be a celebration of the life lived.  The non-sectarian nature of a funeral home atmosphere makes it a perfect place for such an event.

An Anecdotal Tribute

Many choose to have a simple but dignified service consisting of scenes of the person’s life. This may or may not include a member of the clergy who would be asked to define their viewpoint regarding the recently departed.  Co-workers, business associates, friends, neighbors, family members and others could be invited to relate a story of interaction with the person.

This gives all in attendance a well-rounded concept of the deceased individual’s view on life, his or her personality traits and how they interacted with those present. Any wanting to relate their view of the person who isn’t comfortable with public speaking could write down their tribute and request the funeral director speak for them.

A Memorial Video

cremation servicesAsk the funeral director to create a memorial video as a tribute to the person’s life.  Your family photographs can be combined with images and music to create a touching cinematic video.  It can be an integral part of any funeral or memorial service.   After the ceremony, provide copies as gifts for family and friends that will surely become a treasured family keepsake.

Inject Tasteful Humor

Although the service should be a dignified affair, it need not be bland nor depressing. The life of the one being honored may have been quite sociable and filled with humor.  Passing such moments and stories of incidents on should be included as part of the memorial.

A Bridge for the Family

Children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren tend to gain a great deal from such a service. They can hear tributes, stories, humorous incidents from those in attendance and realize they may have inherited a special talent or interest from a forebear. Grandma’s green thumb might be listed as an attribute that a grand child had never heard. Dad’s early years as a musician might have been only slightly known to a child until mentioned by a contemporary of his father during a service. This could explain a deep-seated love of a particular type of music the child has inherited from dad.

Such mentions provide a valuable service to all in attendance who may have known the deceased person. A cremation as a choice of treatment for earthly remains should not be treated as anything different from a burial or entombment–the point of closure for a life well-lived.

Kennedy Funeral and Cremation has been helping Oklahoma families plan memorial services since 1917.  Visit our web site at KennedyCares.com for more information about planning memorial services or schedule an appointment with one of our professionals by calling (918) 599-7799.

The Importance of a Funeral or Memorial Service When Choosing Cremation

5 Alternative Versions of Standard Funeral Songs You Should Consider

When planning a loved ones memorial service or tribute video, selecting the music is a deeply personal decision.  The funeral music should reflect the decedent’s personality and help mourners celebrate his life.   Funeral directors can take your treasured photographs and create a touching video blending your music selection, the photos and video, which can be an integral part of any memorial service.

When helping families select music, we find that there are certain classic songs that are always considered.  If you’re looking to include a standard such as Amazing Grace or Ave Maria, maybe include a different artists rendition.

Hallelujah by Jeff Buckley

Ave Maria by Jewel

While there are endless versions of this classic that are requested, here’s a beautiful rendition by Jewel.

How Great Art Thou by Carrie Underwood featuring Vince Gill

You Raise Me Up by Josh Groban

Amazing Grace (My Chains are Gone) by Chris Tomlin

Go Rest High on That Mountain by Vince Gill

No matter the music select songs that help mourners reflect on your loved one, grieve over his passing and celebrate his life.

5 Alternative Versions of Standard Funeral Songs You Should Consider

Life Tribute Memorial Videos

We offer beautiful tribute videos of your loved one, using your family photographs that are skillfully blended with wonderful graphic images and music, to create an elegantly emotive cinematic video. It can be an integral part of any funeral or memorial service. After the ceremony, the video is sure to become a treasured family keepsake. And, we can make copies as gifts for family and friends.

Tribute Memorial Videos

Call Kennedy Funeral and Cremation at (918) 599-7799 to learn more about our memorial videos for your loved one.  Kennedy Funeral and Cremation has been serving Tulsa, Broken Arrow, Catoosa and surrounding Oklahoma communities since 1917.




Ways to Honor the Deceased at Your Wedding

Your wedding can be a poignant time if you have deceased loved ones. You can find ways to honor the deceased at your wedding while still maintaining the festive nature of the occasion. Ultimately, how you choose to do that is up to you. Some people prefer a subtle approach that perhaps only the bride and bridegroom are aware of, while others like to share their homage with family and friends attending the wedding.

The following are some good ways to honor the deceased at your wedding:

Choose a meaningful day
Get married on a day that was significant to your loved one, such as their birthday or wedding anniversary.

Use one of their favorite songs
If your loved one had a favorite song, have it played as part of the ceremony or reception music. For a special honor, the newly married couple could choose this song as their first dance.

wedding bouquetInclude a photo in your bouquet
Attach a small photo of your loved one to your bouquet for a sweet, subtle reminder of them.

Ask the minister to say a prayer
Ask the minister to include a prayer in the ceremony to remember those who aren’t with us, including their name or names if you’d like. This can also include a moment of silence to honor them.

Include a photo table at the reception
A photo table at the reception can include photos of the bride or groom with the deceased, or perhaps their wedding photos. This can be a nice way to remember several deceased loved ones.

Use or wear something they’ve given you
Perhaps you’ve received a special piece of jewelry that you could wear. Brides may have been given a veil or even a wedding dress that they could have updated. Grooms could use a pocket square or handkerchief.

Save them a seat
Some brides and grooms like to remember loved ones by leaving a chair open at the ceremony in their honor. Include a floral display, candle, or framed photo of them, and perhaps a small, tasteful sign explaining whom the seat is honoring.

Incorporate one of their favorite flowers
Include your loved one’s favorite flower into your bouquet, or use it in floral displays for the reception or at the altar. After the wedding, you can dry the flower and keep it in your wedding album.

Remember them in the program
Remember your deceased loved one with a poem or a brief remembrance in your wedding program.

Light a candle
Light a candle in honor of your loved one during the ceremony.

Serve their favorite food
Have one of your loved one’s favorite foods or drinks served at the reception.

Take a photo
Ask your photographer to take a photo of you and your spouse-to-be holding a photo of your loved one.

Make your wedding favors unique
In lieu of wedding favors, make a donation to your loved one’s favorite charity. Include a small note at the tables or in the program indicating that this was done. Or choose a favor that reminds you of something they loved.

Whichever ways to honor the deceased at your wedding that you choose, do what feels right to you, knowing that they would want you to enjoy and celebrate your special day.

Ways to Honor Deceased Loved Ones at Your Wedding