Sea Burial Services
Honoring your loved one with respect and dignity along the beautiful Florida Coast.
At Arwood Site Services, we recognize how difficult it can be to say goodbye to a loved one. We also know how overwhelming it can be to plan a burial service while mourning your loss.
Whether you plan to attend or prefer an unattended ash scattering service, we will make arrangements and handle all the details. If you have any specific requests, let us know and we will be happy to accommodate your wishes.
For those who may not be able to attend the ash scattering, we will document the ceremony. The latitude and longitude will also be recorded to allow family and friends to revisit the location.
We are honored to have the opportunity to help you say farewell and honor your loved one with a dignified burial at sea.
In general, cremated remains are buried at sea within thirty days of their arrival. You will receive a memorial certification indicating the exact date the service was performed.
On rare occasions, if boats are frozen in port or if continued high seas prevent our voyage, this 30 day schedule cannot be met. If a specific date or time period is important to you, please call us. We will work to accommodate your needs.
We are located in Jacksonville, Florida and primarily perform sea burials off the coast of Florida. Whether your loved one lived, vacationed, or served in the military here, the Florida Coast serves as a beautiful final resting place.
We also have affiliates, licensed by the U. S. Coast Guard and state agencies, in nearly every port in America. We even provide services off the coast of Ireland and in the Holy Land. Scatterings may be performed virtually anywhere worldwide by air or sea. Contact us with any specific requests. We work hard to arrange a dignified, affordable service in the area of your choice.
Yes. If you or other guests wish to attend, you can do this through our chartered services. We currently provide these charter services only in Jacksonville, Florida.
If you wish to attend the Sea Burial, let us know when you submit your request.
Whether you attend or not, we will perform a dignified service for your loved one. If you are unable to attend, we will document the ceremony for you. We will also record the location (latitude and longitude) so you can revisit the location at any time.
When choosing a company to perform an unaccompanied service, credibility is important. Here are a few tips for selecting a Sea Burial service provider:
- The service should be performed by a licensed Coast Guard Master. A sea captain's license is earned through rigorous testing and logged voyages. These logs and license are federal documents which are governed by federal law.
- Ensure the appropriate reports are filed. A scattering performed in the ocean is required to be reported to the Environmental Protection Agency. The report includes specific information about the deceased. It would be a crime to falsify these documents. Please note, burials performed in bays or inlets, where permitted by law, may not require this reporting.
- Choose a reputable company with an established history, relationships with other local businesses, or funeral home referrals. A reputable company will have standards and practices in place to ensure that no false claims can be made against them.
- Choose a firm that owns their own vessel or has access to a fleet of vessels.
Rest assured, it is easier to actually perform the burial at sea than is is to attempt to falsify the event. However, if you prefer to witness the sea burial yourself or with a small group, a charter service can be provided at your convenience.
We will work with you to make your sea burial right for you and your loved one. Please call us if you have any other questions. We would be glad to discuss your concerns and put your mind at ease.
If your loved one left specific requests or if you would like to honor their passing in a specific way, please let us know when you submit your request.
Whether you would like to recite a prayer or poem, lay flowers, or celebrate their love of the seas with a final fishing trip together, we will do everything we can to accommodate your request.
The U. S. Navy performs sea burials for veterans and their families free of charge, with certain restrictions. Many veterans, however, choose to hire private companies to perform their burial. As a private company, we can provide a wider choice of locations and services that allow family members to attend and participate.
Yes. We can accommodate almost any specific date requests, weather permitting.
The Federal Clean Water Act requires remains to be scattered at least three nautical miles from land and you must notify the EPA within 30 days. When we perform your Sea Burial service, we will take care of the reporting process for you.
Flowers, wreaths or leis may be released or tossed along with the remains. Please note all ties and floral arrangement elements must be biodegradable and not post a risk to wildlife. Anything you place in the water must easily decompose in a marine environment.
Pet cremains require a special permit to be spread at sea. If you wish to have your pet's cremains scatter at sea, please contact us for details.
If you contact us before the remains are cremated, we can coordinate with the crematory or funeral director’s transportation directly. If you already have the cremated remains, they can be shipped to use directly via U.S. Registered mail.
Most cremated remains are shipped to us through Priority mail. The use of United States Postal Service’s Priority mail services is the most secure form of transportation. It is used to ship currency, coins, precious metals and gems. The shipment is protected by the United States Government. Using a USPS PO Box is the best way to protect and safely transport human remains.
The tradition of burials at sea dates back thousands of years. Many families, especially those affiliated with the Navy, Coast Guard or other sea service, simply love the ocean. For these individuals, sea burial is a natural choice. These days, the high cost of cemetery space has resulted in more people returning to the tradition of burial at sea. This alternative to traditional burial is often much more affordable. The eternal cycles of the ocean’s water, the conservation of the land space as well as the shortage of cemetery plots are all reasons cited for selecting sea scattering.
Learn more about the U. S. Navy’s long traditions of sea burial.
Yes. Our 24 hour a day access makes it simple for your representative to make arrangements with us. Have your funeral professional contact us and we will coordinate all the details.
Our fees reflect our cost to conduct the requested service. Since we perform burials at locations nationwide and in several countries, we must adjust pricing to conform with the local requirements. Some states permit burials in coastal bays while other locations require burials to be performed a minimum of three miles offshore. Some localities require additional permits to be obtained. Fuel and crew costs also vary with location.
When charter services are selected, different types of boats are scheduled depending on the size of the group and the planned voyage. Larger groups require additional crew members. These requirements are dictated by federal law. In areas with a "busy season" or in vacation destinations, summer costs are higher, as vessel availability decreases and dock fees increase. Larger cities also have have higher docking charges. These expenses are reflected in our pricing
As in any profession, an insured, reputable, company pays more for quality employees and equipment maintenance. Beware of the uninsured or unlicensed boat owner who dabbles in “scattering ashes.”