Dearly missed in November

This November coverphoto contains the following people who are dearly missed. Share your memories on their tributes.

Joe Frazier 11/7 visit his tribute: http://bit.ly/16zublX

Stieg Larsson 11/9 visit his tribute: http://bit.ly/184lLjR

Wilma Rudolph 11/12 visit her tribute:http://bit.ly/1a2voCx

James Coburn 11/18 visit his tribute:http://bit.ly/172jLO8

Robert Altman 11/20 visit his tribute:http://bit.ly/Hqpy43

John F. Kennedy 11/22 visit his tribute:http://bit.ly/184oOZ2

Larry Hagman 11/23 visit his tribute:http://bit.ly/16zB3iZ

Freddie Mercury 11/24 visit his tribute:http://bit.ly/18SgzPe

Leslie Nielsen 11/28 visit his tribute:http://bit.ly/1iGX8yB

Natalie Wood 11/29 visit her tribute:http://bit.ly/16zBBpb

Evel Knievel 11/30 visit his tribute: http://bit.ly/1eawFfb

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Drugs aren’t innocent!

On Saturday August 31, a twenty year old Dutch girl called Lisa, went to a party and took a fingertip of MDMA. This led to water intoxication and eventually led to her death. Her life ended at Wednesday September 4th after a cardiac arrest.

More than eighty percent of the Dutch people use drugs at festivals. That’s what became clear to Lisa’s parents when they had spoken with Lisa’s friends and other youngsters.

Drugs are cheap

The reason for the use of hard drugs is the low price. Using hard drugs is cheaper than drinking alcohol. A pill only costs 3 Euros and is easy to get at festivals, because there are a lot of dealers. This makes the use of drugs very popular.

The parents of Lisa would like to get attention for what happened. They lost Lisa for nothing. “This death should not have happened” is what they said.

On August 31 Lisa was at Voltt, a Dutch dance festival in Amsterdam. Around 9pm Dutch time, Lisa didn’t feel well and took a cab to her hometown Leiden. A friend of hers stayed at the festival. “In the afternoon, around 5pm she took a fingertip of the MDMA powder which she bought before she went to the festival” is what she said. Lisa had already used MDMA a few times before.

“Lisa didn’t drink any alcohol during the festival” her dad says. “When she got home, her roommates stayed with her. Later that evening her situation became worse. She had to throw up a lot.”

Very thirsty

Her parents and sister think Lisa would have drunk a lot of water when she got home. Being very thirsty is one of the side effects of MDMA. “It’s like your tongue sticking to your palate” learned her sister, after she did research about MDMA on Google.

At September 1 around 4.30pm Lisa’s parents got a phone call from the Leiden University Medical Centre about Lisa being in a coma. The hospital was informed by Lisa’s roommates about her situation. Her condition had become even more worse. Lisa now had foam around her mouth and epileptic like seizures.

Drugs can shut down the kidneys, which stops you from peeing. People who drink a large amount of water, are able to poison their own bodies. A lack of salt causes swelling. The skull of a young person has no extra space in it. A swelling will pressure the brain stern, which can have fatal consequences.

Tuesday morning Lisa was declared brain dead after stopping the ventilation. Lisa was a real families person. Unfortunately she couldn’t become what she wanted to: ,,Rich’’. 

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R.I.P. Lisa 9/4/13

http://www.leidschdagblad.nl/regionaal/leidenenregio/article24448233.ece/Lisa-dood-Denk-na-wat-je-doet

A glimpse into the alternative death industry

Caitlin Doughty, a Los Angeles mortician, is a true champion of the alternative death industry. Today, Northern California is at the heart of the “alternative death industry”, which advocates eco-friendly, coffin-free home burials. In 2011 she founded the Order of the Good Death, an online collective committed to returning death to contemporary American life. Its mission is to cut through anxiety around death, and help people to consider their mortality anew. The interest in death was always there – but just like in any other field, modern technology has advanced the conversation.

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Up to years ago, people kept bodies in their homes for a few days after death. But the corpse has been taken out of our culture, and that’s to the detriment of our relationship with death. Now burial means an embalmed body in a heavy-duty casket with a vault built over it, so that the ground doesn’t settle; basically leaving the body in many layers of denial. Engaging with the corpse is good for us, mentally and emotionally.

In California, options for disposing a loved one’s body are basic; burial, cremation, scientific donation. People make urns shaped like golf clubs, or put ashes in fireworks. That’s not innovation. “I don’t think people realise how limitless our engagement with death could be”.

Doughty is now in the process of setting up her own funeral business, as a freelance death midwife. She wants to consult those close to death, and work with funeral directors to realise the funerary desires of the deceased. Just as a wedding planner guides people through the options for the biggest day of their life, so wants Doughty to show people the possibilities for the biggest day of their death.

As to her own death? She would like to be laid out in the desert to be torn apart by animals. “I would like a wolf to eat my foot, and a vulture to pick at my eyeballs. I would like to be scavenged”, says the straight-faced mortician.

 

Source: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/people/profiles/death-becomes-her-meet-the-very-modern-mortician-who-champions-cool-funerals-8627550.html

Preservation of Venezuelan leader’s body not easy.

Much as we perhaps would like to; we do simply not live forever…. Even the bodies of famous world leaders like Lenin and Mao Zedong are simply illusions, with a little help from science. Only the caretakers of Hugo Chavez’ body know what they are doing in order to preserve his body.

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If this were in the US, the technique used would be a simple repeat embalming. However, embalming is not meant to preserve a body for eternity, it is merely meant to delay the inevitable process of decay. That would also mean that these bodies need to be injected periodically, in order to keep the tissue moisturized. If that fails, sometimes a face mask is made, which can be placed over the flesh so it looks as if the person just died. And that is where the illusion comes in; we simply do not know if masks are used on the displayed bodies of famous world leaders.

When Mao died in 1976, Chinese doctors weren’t sure how to preserve his body. Eventually they found a formula in a Western journal in a medical library in Beijing. However, they decided to change the formula slightly, with shocking effects. Mao’s face was round as a ball, and his neck was now the width of his head,” Li Zhisui wrote in The Private Life of Chairman Mao, published outside China 18 years after Mao’s death. The team managed to restore Mao to a more normal appearance with hours of careful massage and makeup, he said, but, just in case, a wax copy of the body was readied as a stand-in Permanently staving off decomposition is no easy job.

The interesting question however is why do certain countries go through these great lengths to preserve their former leaders? For Hugo Chaves it is most likely an elevation to the league of communist deities like Lenin and Mao. Better to belong to that club, than to no club at all….

 

Source: http://www.commercialappeal.com/news/2013/mar/09/preservation-venezuelan-leader-hugo-chavezs-body-n/

Green Piece – green in the ground?

Green burials have become a growing trend lately. More and more funeral homes start offering this so called eco-friendly service. A survey conducted by funeral industry publishers Kates-Boylston Publications found that 43 percent of surveyors said they would consider a green burial. 

Judging by the number of material used for burials per year, there is definitely a need. According to Mary Woodsen, a science researcher at Cornell University, an estimated 60,000 tons of steel and 4.8 million gallons of embalming fluid are buried each year. That’s enough material to build eight Eiffel Towers. To give the slowly but gradually growing phenomenon even more kudos, there is now a committee called the Green Burial Council.

 Eco friendly burials use predominantly biodegradable material, or e-coffins. Bodies are wrapped in or placed in a pine coffin and put to rest where they then decompose and become part of the earth. It’s a nice idea to know that your body is able to return to the earth after you are put to rest. While it’s definitely a personal choice, it’s comforting knowing that you can still keep your values, even at the end; dust to dust.

The Green Burial Counsel performs ecological surveys of the cemetery grounds and sets rules that include hand-digging the grave, replacement of the same soil that was dug up, and no vault or cement grave liners. Only biodegradable material is allowed to be buried with the bodies.

 

Source: The Weekender – http://www.theweekender.com/news/greenpiece/511065/GREEN-PIECE-Green-in-the-ground

 

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PuroMarketing Blog Post

PuroMarketing, a Spanish blog about marketing, mentioned Respectance in a blog post about special social networks.

According to them Respectance is a social network for the dead, where people can honor their past away family. That’s essentialy what Respectance is.

Check out the blog post HERE.
It tells us some interesting facts about social networks, for example:

Did you know every second someone creates a profile on LinkedIn?

Sidenote: the blog’s Spanish, so it’s nice to have Google Translate on!

Mourning: the good, the bad and the ugly

Today an agent got shot in a village next to Amsterdam. It was a big shock to all people with their hearts at the right place.

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I watched what happened. The main newspaper in the Netherlands, Telegraaf, wrote an article about this on the front page online. This newspaper is far ahead others, they allow their readers to react to almost all articles they write online. For this reason they will be a winner in the end. The article about this lady cop, got an enormous amount of reactions. More than any other news item. When I write this, it totalled over 800 reactions.

Then the Dutch condolence register, a bit plain but still popular, got an enormous amount of reactions. And among them a very ugly one. This again got picked up by the shockblog Geenstijl. And then people react again to this guy leaving this ugly anti-condolence to this agent.

What a circle, and how interesting to see that people are now fully and visibly involved with everything that is happening. It gives me more trust, that there are many people who think as you do yourself. You feel more understood, if you recognize yourself in these reactions.

Why Online? The Future of the Funeral Business

Why online? Simply stated, the future is online. We all know the Internet can be overwhelming for first-time users. It is typical to think, “How do I find what I want? This is too much!” Butit is not as difficult as you might think.

 

Getting Referrals

Funeral directors know the traditional venues for referrals including affiliate advertisement, newspaper ads, yellow page marketing and word-of-mouth. Nevertheless, funeral directors also know the market is changing. There was a time when three generations of the same family would choose the same funeral director and services. Now, familiesdo not even live in the same town and many do not even live in the same country. People often communicate with family and friends online. How is this done in a way that is easier to handle than a string of impersonal group emails? The answer is social-networking websites like Myspace and Facebook.

 

Social Networking vs. Regular Website

You may be thinking, “I already have a website.” However, while they may appear similar, a personal website and a social networking site are not the same thing. Your website is like your home, it is a one-stop destination created by you and focused on you. A social networking site is different. Here we are talking about a community where visitors who care about a particular issue share stories and connect. A social networking site is like a virtual town square.

Does it not make more sense to promote yourself in the town square, than it does to try to invite everyone in the entire town over to your place for coffee?

Yourwebsite is probably great and its purpose is to provide visitors with an extended menu of your services, but you need to remember that many social networking sites have larger audiences than newspapers or televisionshows.

There are over 200 million MySpace members with the average member age being 35-years-old. In 2007, 12 percent of all time spent on the Internet in the United States was spent on MySpace (approximately 53,000 years). The numbers do notlie – you need to be where the people are.

 

Where You Come In

Let online communities know what you have to offer. Do not expect clients to come to you. Take the step in getting to them and they will pay attention. For example, take Lies Kroes in Holland. After her death, family members created an online tribute and listed the website address in theobituary and funeral invitations. Family members and friends in the Netherlands and the UnitedStatesleft condolences, shared memories and connected over huge distances. To date, the group has posted 21 memories, 116 photographs, and six videos – and they keep returning to make updates. How much time do you think it would take for you to add over 100 photos, six videos and 21 separate blocks of text to your website? In many cases, that is more than a standard site would even allow for.

As a funeral service provider, you can sponsor tributes like Lies’, establish goodwill with hundreds of friends and family members, and the only info you have to provide to produce these living memorials is your logo and contact info. It is really simple, and the best part is that years after someone has passed away, you remain the host of a 24-hour memorial where family members can celebrate someone they love.

 

Tips on Getting Started

  1. Look for social-networking sites that are appropriate. Communities connected to obituaries, grief support, funeral services, and memories/tributes are the most suitable.
  2. Do not be a wall flower; get involved in the community. Write a weekly post, run a contest, ask a daily question, provide links to your favorite articles and comics or simply email people you find interesting. Connections are key to growing your referrals.
  3. Drill down. If you specialize in military memorials, join a military memorial group. If you only operate in Columbus, then only speak to people from Ohio. Your time is valuable, be smart with who you engage.
  4. Offer online memorials as an added service to obituary listings. If you are placing an obituary, consider also offering a tribute page using the same info. This is a great way to engage family members.
  5. Make your clients your advocates. Encourage them to provide the link to your tribute pages on their funeral invitations and obituaries. This is a nice way for those who can not attend the funeral to leave their condolences, pictures and videos. When they visit the site, they will also be able to see that it was you who provided this great service in the first place.

To help our funeral homes and chapels that we are working with, we have created very nicely designed, quality handouts.

If you would like to order some for your funeral home, to help grieving families on their way to create a lasting memorial, please contact Mansha Thapa at mansha@respectance, phone number : 415-398-2595

Also to sign up and get access to all the tools and be found on the internet with the specialized services your funeral home provides, go to http://www.respectance.com/join/business

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#RIP Heath Ledger

heath-and-jake

We could not believe the news that Heath Ledger is no longer with us. You always think that you see things coming. There are some artists that are really nominated to cross the line. But we were all shocked that Heath Ledger is no longer with us.

We hope that the fans will find their way to express their condolences at Respectance. After all this is why we started it. To give people a medium to express their emotions and read those of others.

Heath was a great actor, he will never be forgotten.