Prop me up Beside the Jukebox


by Michael J. Neddo 

“Prop me up beside the jukebox if I die Lord I wanna go to Heaven, but I don’t wanna go tonight Fill my boots up with sand, put a stiff drink in my hand Prop me up beside the jukebox if I die”– Joe Diffy “Prop Me Up Beside The Jukebox”

Okay, so I know we date ourselves if we admit to knowing this song and we will probably have it going through our heads all day now. But there is a higher purpose to quoting it though as it leads me into the topic on planning in advance. Please read on, you may even find the answer to Joe Diffy’s request.

Deciding what to do is the one area of planning in advance that many of us have already had exposure to. Think about it, “Just throw me in the ditch,” “Put me in a plain pine box,” or one of the more direct yet as of yet undone requests “Face down without britches in a casket that opens in the middle and a sign that says …” well, I think you get the point. If we haven’t personally said what to do with our body after we die, we have at least heard someone else say it. So how much does it take to actually leave some instructions that can actually be done and help all involved? It actually takes very little once you realize the three general options that exist.

Here is a spoiler alert, “cremation” is NOT one of them.

Whether a traditional burial of the body or a cremation is done, one of three general types of services or “celebrations” takes place:

  1. A formal gathering of friends and family along with services BEFORE the burial or cremation takes place.
  2. A formal gather of friends and family along with services AFTER the burial or cremation takes place.
  3. NO formal gathering of friends and family or services, just the burial or cremation.

This usually comes as a surprise to the many people that I speak with who feel cremation simplifies the process and choices that may otherwise burden their family. Many are unaware that you can have a service with embalming, an open casket viewing, and even a church service before cremation. In fact, many funeral homes carry special caskets termed “rental” or “ceremonial” caskets that can save families money over traditional caskets when this type of service is desired.

In truth, deciding on cremation actually creates more choices and options for a family when a death occurs. If you really want to simplify the process and choices left to your family, the surest way is to speak to your funeral professional.

Funeral directors are not just licensed and trained to assist those who have had a death in the family, we also provide invaluable and no cost consultations to help individuals plan for that eventual circumstance.The two most common questions asked by a family after the process of handling a loved one’s death are “Did I do the right thing?” and “Did I do what they would have wanted?”

Answering these questions is up to you and for more personal assistance, speak to your preferred funeral professional. They are key to helping families live, laugh and love again.

Oh, and before I forget, yes Mr. Diffy could be propped up “by the jukebox”. Of course a jukebox would need to be found and then it would need to be decided whether the jukebox should be brought into a funeral home or if the service should be held in the establishment where the jukebox is held. Either way, it makes a service as unique as the life it represents.

In the end, you deserve a celebration of your life that is as unique as you are. Don’t leave that to your family to do on their own. It can easily be done on your part and your friends and family will appreciate remembering and celebrating you the way you want to be remembered.