Funeral Services


A ceremony, whether simple or elaborate, traditional or contemporary, provides family and friends the occasion to say a final “good-bye”. A funeral represents a purposeful opportunity to reflect on the meaning of life and the impact that meaning has for the family and friends. This time is important because it gives the grieving family a chance to share their memories and support one another.

There is no single proper way to plan a funeral service. The service is meant to express the personality and life of your loved one. The choices you make will determine its significance for you as you create a meaningful experience for everyone.

Traditionally, a burial service involves a visitation, followed by a funeral service in a church (place of worship), the funeral home or cemetery. Family or religious traditions are often a factor for choosing a burial. Decisions need to be made on whether the body needs to be embalmed, what kind of casket to purchase and if it will be opened or closed, what cemetery to use, and what to put on the gravestone.

Our goal at F.S. Roberts & Son Funeral Home is to help individuals fulfill their loved one’s wishes, arrange a personal and meaningful service, and for those who wish to plan their funeral ahead of time to put together a personalized pre-planned arrangement.



Frequently Asked Questions about Funerals


What is a Funeral?

A funeral is a ceremony for a deceased person prior to burial or cremation.  A funeral gives the opportunity for family and friends of the deceased to gather and mourn the passing of their loved one, to share cherished memories and celebrate their life.  A funeral is a vital first step to help the bereaved heal after the loss of someone special.

What type of funeral service should I have?

If no pre-arrangements have been made, the type of service is entirely up to you.  Services are usually held at a church  (place of worship), the funeral home or cemetery.  There is a wealth of different services, ranging from a traditional religious or military service to something a little more non-traditional.  Our funeral directors are more than happy to work with you to figure out what would be the most appropriate for the individual and their family.

Can I personalize a funeral?

Of course you can, in fact more and more people are opting for a more non-traditional personalized service.  There is no right or wrong way to celebrate someones life.  There are many unique ways to celebrate life, let the funeral director know exactly what your desires are and they will honor your wishes.

Do we need to have an obituary notice and what is included in one?

It is highly recommended to have an obituary notice that’s either placed in a local newspaper, or placed on our website.  An obituary lets the public know that a death has occurred, and gives them information about the service. 

Obituaries generally include the deceased’s full name, age, city and date of birth and the city they were living in when they died.  It also includes the name of the deceased’s spouse, along with the names of anyone else significant in their lives, such as parents, children or grandchildren.  Space may be limited in a newspaper obituary, but you may include a little blurb on the life and legacy of the deceased.  An online obituary or memorial website offers you the chance to add a lot more about the deceased.

Who are funeral directors and what do they do?

Funeral directors are licensed in the State in which they practice. They are in charge of all the logistics following a death.  They complete all the necessary paperwork, make arrangements for the transportation of the body, and put into action the choices made by the family in regards to the funeral service and the final resting place of the body.  Beyond the logistics, funeral directors are there to provide moral support and guidance for someone coping with death.

What happens if the death occurs in the middle of the night or on the weekend?

We are here to help, funeral directors are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and 365 days a year.

What if a death occurs away from my home town?

We are here to help, we can arrange to have the remains transported home from anywhere in the world.  We will assume responsibility and make the proper arrangements to have the remains return to the community.

Is Embalming Required by Law?

No.  In fact some religions forbid embalming.  However, some countries require embalming by law in order for remains to leave or enter the country. If it is not against your religious custom, embalming is recommended, especially if there is an extended gap between death and burial or cremation. Embalming is required for public visitation and/or if the remains are being transported by common carrier.

How much does a funeral cost?

The cost of the funeral varies depending on the wishes you have.  The average cost of a funeral is between $5,000-$7,000.  The cost includes all professional services including transportation, embalming and other preparations, the use of a facility for the ceremony, and the purchase of a casket or urn.

Why are funerals so expensive?

Funerals are labor intensive and require a lot of work from a lot of people.  The cost of a funeral goes beyond merchandise such as caskets, it includes the services of a licensed funeral director in making the necessary arrangements, completing documents, and dealing with all the other individuals involved in the death (doctors, clergy, lawyers, insurance companies).  Funeral directors work an average of 40 hours per funeral.  The cost of operating a funeral home is factored into the cost as well.  Funeral homes are a 24 hour operation, with extensive facilities that need to be maintained and secured.

What do I do if I am not satisfied with the way a funeral was handled?

Our first recommendation would be to contact the owner of the Funeral Home, and explain how you feel about the way the funeral was handled. By explaining to the funeral home owner, you are giving them a chance to correct the issues that happened.

Funeral Services in the State of Massachusetts are regulated by the Board of Registration of Funeral Directors and Embalmers, they can be reached by calling 617-727-9970. In the United States, they are regulated by the Federal Trade Commission, they can be reached by telephone at 877-FTC-HELP (382-4357) or you can fill out a form online at www.ftc.gov.

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