When Death Occurs

Whether a death is sudden or expected, the loss of a loved one is unique to each person experiencing the loss. This section seeks to guide you through the immediate hours following a passing.

Pronouncement of death:

When death occurs a doctor must officially pronounce the death by completing a medical of death certificate. Once that is done, our funeral home can be contacted to transfer your loved one into our care.


Death at a nursing home or hospice:

If family are not at the location when death occurs, the staff will call the family member(s) they have contact information for. Once a doctor has officially pronounced death, the funeral home will be contacted. Either staff or family can contact the funeral home. If death occurs at a care facility outside of St. Marys, I would recommend the family contact the funeral home.


Death at a hospital:

If family are not at the hospital when death occurs, the care staff will call the family member(s) they have contact information for. Once a doctor has officially pronounced death, the funeral home will be contacted. Either the care staff or family will contact the funeral home. If death occurs at a care facility outside of St. Marys, I would recommend the family contact the funeral home even when hospital staff say they will contact the funeral home. The funeral home staff will contact the hospital to be advised on the release.


Death at a residence:

If an unexpected death occurs, call 911. Emergency staff will attend and a doctor with a coroner designation will pronounce the death. The funeral home can then be contacted and the deceased will either be transferred to the funeral home or to a morgue for autopsy if required.


Death at a residence for expected death:

If a person is at home with a terminal illness and has set up an E.D.I.T.H. plan (expected death in the home) with Community Care Access Centre, then a nurse practitioner can be contacted to pronounce the death. Then the funeral home can be contacted.


Setting up a time to meet with the funeral director:

Depending on the choice of the executor/family, I can either meet in person or over the phone. Masks are to be worn by all who are able when gathering indoors. If arrangements are done via a combination phone and email , I will email information regarding options and costs, and then we will have a phone conversation to finalize details.

Click here to understand how the current COVID-19 restrictions affect funerals.


How we are handling funeral arrangements at this time:

Information about the deceased to complete documentation: A new page has been created on this website for collecting the basic information needed to complete required documentation. Once that information is submitted we will contact the executor or person(s) responsible for making funeral arrangements to review information and discuss service preferences.

Click here for the Information Collection Page


Pictures:

Pictures of the deceased, including one that could be used with a newspaper notice, are helpful. Additional pictures can be collected to create a slideshow on the funeral home website. Pictures can be emailed to andrew@hodgesfuneralhome.ca. If a family has pictures that need to be scanned, an appointment can be made to bring the pictures to the funeral home for us to scan – we do not charge for this service.
Our website can display up to 250 pictures.



If no pre-planning has been done, necessary arrangements need to be made for the funeral service.  These include:

  • Scheduling the location, date and time of the visitation and funeral service
  • Selecting burial or cremation
  • Choosing Funeral Products
  • Arranging a cemetery plot
  • Preparing an obituary notice
  • Scheduling transportation arrangements

We will guide you through all of these steps, using your wants, needs and desires to create a memorable funeral for your loved one. From here the funeral services can be personalized.  Did your loved one have a favorite sports team?  What was their favorite type of music?  What activity was your loved one known best for?  Sharing these memories help pay tribute to the life of your loved one.