1. We believe that grieving families of every faith, creed or practice need more time and control over their experiences at the time of a death. We price out every option with complete transparency, and help create a funeral that works for you—be it in a cemetery, crematory, funeral home chapel, private residence, house of worship or secular venue.
2. We believe that each funeral begins at the place of death. We want you to spend time with your deceased loved one to process the new reality, bathe or shroud the body, grieve, sing, pray, tell stories. The amount of time desired for these experiences differs from family to family. But if we’ve met with you prior to a death supervised by hospice, we’ll be at the bedside for the deceased’s transfer (any time day or night) to comfort you and answer questions. We also help do-it-yourself families arrange funerals in their residences (in New York you still need a licensed firm like ours to file the death certificate). We are reviving the old-fashioned home-based visitation (viewing or wake) in New York , which helps families grieve more deeply and authentically in the place they're most comfortable.
3. We are green burial experts and educate New Yorkers to see that eco-friendly burials without embalming fluid, metal caskets, or burial vaults are gentle, natural, transformative to those actively partaking in the graveside service, and still within the means of many. Jewish and Islamic burials are generally green, and we share the belief that stewardship of the earth is a vitally important value. We know every cemetery in the New York area that will accept a shrouded deceased person on a pallet without any surrounding casket at all.
4. Our cremations are meaning-infused, ceremonial and they cost less—even with a committal/final farewell service at Green-Wood—than cremations through the corporate firms of Manhattan. We encourage families to hold committal ceremonies prior to cremation and even, for those up to it, witness the casket’s entry into the cremation chamber at Green-Wood Cemetery, which is beautifully designed.
5. We will tell grieving families what caskets NOT to buy. Our biodegradable, gracious offerings are made of wicker, pine or felted wool. Our pine boxes cost $975. Our wicker caskets start at $1800. We cover our $195 cardboard cremation caskets (which can be painted or decorated) with homespun quilted covers that make them look like a million bucks. Our most stately handcrafted casket costs $3600, has walnut inlayed accents, and looks like Abraham Lincoln could have been buried in it (we feel this is an attractive selling point)! We also offer hard wood rental/ceremonial caskets with cardboard cremation liners for $1595.
6. We meet families to make arrangements where they are—the home or apartment, hospital waiting room or reception area, hospice corridors, cafeterias, coffee shops, whatever’s most convenient.
7. In turn, we deliver everything back to the home—death certificates, urns of cremated remains, condolence thank-you notes, flower arrangements after a memorial service.
8. We help assemble digital obituaries, NYTimes obits and death notices. Feel free to trot out those old family photo albums and shoe boxes of ephemera, and we’ll create a life-encompassing story of your loved one’s life.
We serve New Yorkers of all races, secular and religious backgrounds, and we welcome lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender families with open arms. We are active members of the Funeral Consumer's Alliance (FCA), Association for Death Education and Counseling (ADEC), the National Home Funeral Alliance (NHFA), Green Burial Council, Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce, International Cemetery, Cremation and Funeral Association (ICCFA), the National Funeral Director's Association (NFDA). The Cooperative Funeral Fund is our pre-need funeral fund management company.
How We Help New York City Families
Respectfully and compassionately transfer the deceased from place of death.
Manage burial or cremation arrangements with any cemetery or Green-Wood Cemetery's crematory in Brooklyn.
Locate the right casket or urn.
Help families without clergy select the ceremony structure, readings (religious or secular), poems and blessings.
Book the livery (hearse, limousines, sedans, or SUVs).
File for the death certificate and promptly obtain as many copies as you need.
Assist with the digital obituary or death notice.
Create prayer cards and funeral programs (based on your typed order of service)
Cue recorded music from our speakers, or book musicians for your service.
Arrange military honors for veterans.
Recommend local oral historians, biographers and filmmakers to help preserve the life.
Many of the families we help with funerals live in Park Slope, Ditmas Park, Brooklyn Heights, Cobble Hill, Lefferts Manor, Windsor Terrace, Williamsburg, the upper West side, upper East side, Chelsea, and lower East side of Manhattan.