Advancements in digital technology have changed just about every aspect of our lives, from the way we shop to the way we communicate with each other. It’s even impacted the way we say goodbye to loved ones who have passed.
“Videos, in the form of slideshows or more recently, live streams, have expanded the ways we can remember those we’ve lost and share their memory with others – even if they can’t attend the service in person,” says Brian Calhoun, Funeral Director at Stuhr Funeral Home.
Here are some ideas for how to incorporate video technology into your loved one’s funeral service.
“Not only is a memorial video a powerful way to pay tribute to someone’s life at the service itself, it’s also something you can take home and watch for years to come in order to keep their memory alive,” explains Calhoun.
There are a couple different ways to create a video tribute. First is having professionals produce it. Stuhr Funeral Home offers this service in-house.
“We offer a video tribute service to all of the families we serve,” explains Calhoun. “Once shared at the service, we also provide a link to the family that they can share with extended family, friends and social media. They also can purchase the final video on DVD.”
If you’d rather go the DIY route, there are a wide variety of tools you can use to create the video, including Tribute.co or iMovie. A few tips:
- Keep it relatively short – 10 minutes or less is a good rule of thumb.
- Utilize multiple types of media if possible, such as photos, videos, audio recordings and songs.
- Do a trial run (or two!) before the actual service to ensure everything is working properly.
Also, be sure to check with your funeral director about what type of format you need to supply the video (MP4, DVD, etc.).
Livestreaming and Recording
Bringing people together in times of celebration and grief has never been easier thanks to video technologies like live streaming.
“Live streaming funeral services has become much more popular this year in light of COVID-19 travel restrictions and capacity limitations in indoor spaces,” says Calhoun. “But we don’t think that this trend of livestreaming will go away once the pandemic ends.”
For instance, families also use livestreams and recordings as an alternative for people who aren’t able to attend in person. The team at Stuhr have even had families use pre-recorded remarks from loved ones who were unable to attend in person.
An increasing number of funeral homes, including Stuhr, offer a live streaming service in-house, but you can also set it up yourself if that’s not the case. To prepare, you’ll need to set up the shot with a tripod and streaming and/or recording device (smartphone, DSLR camera, etc.). Also, coordinate with your funeral home about testing the sound, lighting and internet connection to ensure everything comes though clearly on the device.
Finally, get the word out by notifying friends and family about the live stream or recording so they can virtually attend the service.
“Being apart has been hard on everyone this year, but especially if you’ve lost someone. Video technologies like this have really helped provide people with a sense of community and comfort, and I expect they’ll become a mainstay of services in the future, too,” adds Calhoun.
Stuhr Funeral Home, a trusted name in funeral service for more than 150 years, cares for families of those whose lives have ended. Stuhr Funeral Home is committed to providing quality arrangements to honor loved ones and family traditions. For more information about available funeral services, visit JHenryStuhr.com or call (843) 723-2524.