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Old 03-30-2015, 10:41 AM
 
Location: Chicago area
14,364 posts, read 7,911,249 times
Reputation: 53461

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When my friends husband passed he wanted his ashes scattered in the apple orchard of the mini farm he owned. It was a chilly fall night with a gentle wind rustling through the trees. We parked our cars in an obscure place and with flashlights in tow we headed through the corn field towards the orchard. The farm was owned by another and we did not have permission to trespass. We reached the orchard with "Jimmy" in tow and we each shared a special memory of him. His daughter was to do the honor of releasing his ashes only she didn't check the direction of the wind before she freed her father. You guessed it. Almost everyone was covered with what was left of our dear one. The laughter was contagious and so was the gross out factor.

I had my mother's ashes for around ten years because I simply didn't know what to do with them. We did not have a very good relationship and I was the one who cleaned up the mess after she passed. My brother and I settled the estate and went our separate ways. I finally decided to scatter her at the school garden that was planted in her honor. It was a chilly October night with a light rain falling. I drove to the school which was minutes from our childhood home that I owned as a rental. There was some school function and I couldn't get close enough in the rain to scatter her ashes. Okay plan B? I was standing in the driveway of my childhood home with my mother's ashes in my hand when my brother drove up. It was creepy because I hadn't seen him in ten years, nor have I seen him since that night. I asked him if he wanted her ashes and he said no. I decided to scatter her in the yard under a big tree. She didn't have much of a life outside of her job and alcoholism. It was kind of sad that I was the only one present when I released her ashes, but in the end we all reap what we sew. These were two radically different story's for two radically different people. Every situation is unique and everyone has to decide what's best in these situations.
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Old 03-30-2015, 10:48 AM
 
950 posts, read 714,064 times
Reputation: 1615
Quote:
Originally Posted by animalcrazy View Post
When my friends husband passed he wanted his ashes scattered in the apple orchard of the mini farm he owned. It was a chilly fall night with a gentle wind rustling through the trees. We parked our cars in an obscure place and with flashlights in tow we headed through the corn field towards the orchard. The farm was owned by another and we did not have permission to trespass. We reached the orchard with "Jimmy" in tow and we each shared a special memory of him. His daughter was to do the honor of releasing his ashes only she didn't check the direction of the wind before she freed her father. You guessed it. Almost everyone was covered with what was left of our dear one. The laughter was contagious and so was the gross out factor.

I had my mother's ashes for around ten years because I simply didn't know what to do with them. We did not have a very good relationship and I was the one who cleaned up the mess after she passed. My brother and I settled the estate and went our separate ways. I finally decided to scatter her at the school garden that was planted in her honor. It was a chilly October night with a light rain falling. I drove to the school which was minutes from our childhood home that I owned as a rental. There was some school function and I couldn't get close enough in the rain to scatter her ashes. Okay plan B? I was standing in the driveway of my childhood home with my mother's ashes in my hand when my brother drove up. It was creepy because I hadn't seen him in ten years, nor have I seen him since that night. I asked him if he wanted her ashes and he said no. I decided to scatter her in the yard under a big tree. She didn't have much of a life outside of her job and alcoholism. It was kind of sad that I was the only one present when I released her ashes, but in the end we all reap what we sew. These were two radically different story's for two radically different people. Every situation is unique and everyone has to decide what's best in these situations.

( 1st paragraph).........."the farm was owned by another and we did not have permission "

As a former farmer/land owner, I wouldn't take too kindly towards people trespassing on my land at night.

Show a little courtesy and ask permission
I would not want someone else's remains scattered on my property.
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Old 03-30-2015, 11:09 AM
 
Location: Bend Or.
1,126 posts, read 2,456,760 times
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You will find they are not really like ashes, more like Kitty Litter. I have spread them 5 times, 4 times by airplane, and once in Lake Michigan. They do not float in the wind.
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Old 03-30-2015, 02:24 PM
 
Location: Retired in Malibu/La Quinta/Flagstaff
1,324 posts, read 1,326,254 times
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I've used my airplane to release cremains of fellow retired officers. I have accomodated a police chaplain/Catholic priest and up to four family members. If a certain site has been selected, I gently circle the area while the chaplain/priest recites prayers or says a few words of comfort. After that, the ashes are released.
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Old 03-30-2015, 02:55 PM
 
Location: On the "Left Coast", somewhere in "the Land of Fruits & Nuts"
8,367 posts, read 8,584,982 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eidas View Post
cremains (that I've seen) don't float off beautifully in the wind like in movies; scattering seems to work
Releasing 'em off boats is also an extra risky business with all the wind and currents going every which way. Once saw some folks releasing the 'cremains' off the stern of a WA State ferry boat in choppy Puget Sound waters on a gusty day, and needless to say, damp ashes landing on everyone and on cars parked on the ferry, was an 'interesting' sight. Although the deck hands were surprisingly helpful and cool about cleaning up the whole mess.
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Old 03-30-2015, 03:57 PM
 
950 posts, read 714,064 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrolman View Post
I've used my airplane to release cremains of fellow retired officers. I have accomodated a police chaplain/Catholic priest and up to four family members. If a certain site has been selected, I gently circle the area while the chaplain/priest recites prayers or says a few words of comfort. After that, the ashes are released.
Surprised a Catholic priest would do that.

The Catholic Church allows cremation but the ashes must be buried in a cemetery.
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Old 03-30-2015, 04:18 PM
 
Location: Central IL
15,200 posts, read 8,509,345 times
Reputation: 35575
Quote:
Originally Posted by jack_pine View Post
Yeah when we did it with my dads the ashes kind of clumped up on the ground. We had to go get a rack to spread them out.
Seems like at least some of the ashes will be too heavy to scatter even if the wind cooperates. And the image of that is like throwing the ashes on the ground which I doubt is what you want (not the image of scattering). Maybe that's why you see it done in the movies at sea or over a cliff to avoid that awkwardness.

I did a really quick google search "how to scatter ashes" - here's one site - ignore that it's a funeral home advertisement site:

How to Scatter Ashes - techniques and ideas for spreading ashes

I'm sure you can finds lots of ideas for respectful ceremonies Good luck!
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Old 03-30-2015, 04:54 PM
 
Location: Northern Virginia
126 posts, read 138,058 times
Reputation: 323
I've been on a couple of "Ash Dives", where we jump, get into formation, and release the ashes of a fellow skydiver at his /her request. It's an honor to be asked to go on tributes to jumpers we have known and loved.
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Old 03-30-2015, 05:11 PM
 
Location: UpstateNY
8,612 posts, read 8,294,298 times
Reputation: 7522
My stepdad was a huge Yankees fan. When he passed I met my mom and his brother at Abercrombie field in Cooperstown, NY; the home of the baseball hall of fame.

We had lunch and toured the museum.

Our original plan was to bury the ashes under the bleachers, but there was a game on and tons of people. I couldn't dig the soil with the small trowel I had.

We went and seated ourselves in the bleachers to watch the end of the game. After it ended, when most all the people had left, I picked up the box and walked over to home plate. I opened the box and cradled it near my waist with the top end tipped over, and ran all the bases, gently letting the ashes dump out.

There was a small group left in the bleachers, one was an older guy with a cane who yelled out 'Put some leg into it!' Mind you I was in dress pants and heels.

After I crossed home plate, I began to walk to where my mom and uncle were, passing the folks and the guy with the cane. I stopped and showed them the box and told them why I was running the bases.

Not a dry eye in the house.
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Old 03-30-2015, 07:15 PM
 
Location: Dallas, TX and Las Vegas, NV
5,686 posts, read 4,408,388 times
Reputation: 11639
Wow, some wonderful advise and great stories. Thanks all soooo much.

We will, perhaps, bury the ashes. We will be driving to the place, from Texas to CA. Now, my brother and my son will each also take a small amount of the mixed ashes and bury them at their homes and plant a memory tree. That was a wonderful idea.

I also have been given permission from the Director of Parks & Rec at the town to do this. He asked that we don't draw much attention to ourselves if possible; its on public land but on a mountain ridge over the home where my parents lived for 35 years and were very happy.
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