Cremation Ashes: Answering FAQs from the Bereaved

Cremation Ashes: Answering FAQs from the Bereaved

When your loved one gets cremated, there can be a lot of emotions and questions running through your mind. The grief that comes at this time may make it hard to focus on various things, so it may help you have some peace of mind with answers to the most frequently asked questions regarding cremation.

How Long Before Ashes Can Be Picked Up?

The cremation process is done with care, but the technology we have today also makes things go by faster. Although the actual cremation usually takes no more than a couple of hours, family members must usually wait a bit longer before they can collect the ashes.

If you are not in the crematorium at the time of cremation, then you will receive a call to let you know when you can pick up the ashes.

What Do Cremated Ashes Look Like?

Cremated ashes are stored securely, so it’s not likely that loved ones will see the actual ashes unless they go out of their way to open the container.

Cremated ashes are coarser than other forms of ash and have a texture closer to sand. You’ll find the color ranging from gray-white to dark gray. Because of the minerals, salts, and acids that cremated ashes naturally contain, they may be heavier than you might expect.

How Are Cremated Ashes Stored?

It is natural to think about cremation storage options, but this actually depends on the family. After cremation, ashes are stored in a sealed plastic bag which is then placed in a regular box unless otherwise requested.

Cremation urns are the standard choice for final disposition, and from there, it’s up to the family’s discretion whether to bring the urn to a columbarium, bury it, or take it home.

Do Cremations Come With Urns?

Urns are available for purchase at the crematorium. Each urn comes with a tag, some basic information, and an identification number to differentiate it from others. There are different styles available to cater to different cultures and preferences. If you’re certain that cremation is the way to go, you can pick your urn accordingly.

Do Cremated Ashes Have a Smell?

If you are concerned that the ashes will smell after the cremation, the answer is no. There is no odor emitted from ashes that have been properly cremated.

Even over time, you shouldn’t expect any particular smells to develop. If anything, certain cremation containers will simply emit a slight incense-like smell.

What Will It Be Like to Pick Up Ashes?

Picking up cremated ashes can be an emotional experience, so it’s important to realize that it’s not uncommon to be experiencing a wide range of different emotions at once. Your loved one was most likely someone who meant a lot to you, and being able to pick up the ashes that are all that are left from the body can be an interesting experience.

One thing to note is that it shouldn’t be a scary experience. You can take some comfort in knowing that the process has been done with care and respect.


If you are looking at cremation options for yourself or your loved ones, there are many things to consider. It has become a more accessible choice now that there are affordable cremation services. The answers above will hopefully shed some light and make the entire process feel less daunting, even in times of mourning.

Evergreen is a cemetery, crematory, and funeral home that offers families cost-savings and comfort in their time of need. Contact us to get affordable cremation services in Jacksonville, FL

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