No one wants to think about death.
It’s a morbid topic, a sad reality, but unfortunately, it happens. It’s a natural part of life that cannot be avoided (tell your kids that when you watch the new Lion King coming out soon).
Sooner or later we will all be faced with a loved one that dies. The question is: Do you bury the dead with their belongings, or do you keep their jewelry as a sentimental keepsake?
To be honest with you, there is no right or wrong way to handle things. It all comes down to what the deceased may have wanted; either in a will, or what they may have stated. And of course, what you feel comfortable with.
Being buried with their jewelry
Throughout history people have been buried with their jewelry, diamonds and treasures. Look at King Tut for example. He was covered with it, surrounded by it, he even had a whole room full of it.
Evidence of people taking jewelry to the grave has been around for centuries. Look at grave robbers (gold diggers). People have dug up rings, coins, and even gold teeth. It’s a fact, some people love their jewelry so much they want to take it to the end.
You can’t blame them either
Jewelry is dear to our hearts. We love our gold and diamonds. We’ve worked hard our whole life for these possessions, why not take them with us?
But, if I were to bet, I would say that most people DO NOT want to be buried with their gems. Most will want their rings, pendants and earrings to be passed down for generations to come. Just like our parents and grandparents did. Let someone else enjoy the gold, platinum and silver.
It does no good resting 6 feet deep.
As simple as this may sound, it’s actually a very tough decision to make. It’s not so cut and dry when it’s your time to choose. You have to add in emotions and feelings. It’s overwhelming and even morbid to think about. No one wants to go there.
If you decide to keep the jewelry, this is what normally happens:
Keeping the jewelry
Loved ones are normally displayed in their coffin with their jewelry. A couple of their favorite rings on their fingers look wonderful (crossed upon their heart). These items are left with the beloved until the service or the funeral ends.
Once all of the distant family members and friends are ushered out into the hallway or outside of the parlor, the immediate family is left behind with the coffin. Behind closed doors is where you will say your last goodbyes.
After you finish, the funeral directors will gently remove the jewelry from the dearly departed (if you wish to keep them) and hand them over to you. Then the coffin is closed and is ready to be taken to the grave site by the pallbearers. This whole procedure is touching and very private. It helps bring closure.
What should you do?
I can’t tell you to do one thing or another. It’s not my place. I’ve been through this before and it really is heart wrenching.
On one hand I believe that the items should be passed down. Everybody likes a keepsake. But then I also believe that those items should stay with the dead. That jewelry made them happy. Why shouldn’t they enjoy it forever?
Whatever you decide, the decision should be made as a family and made as a majority. Some think that if no one wants the items, they should be buried. Others think it all depends on how expensive the items are. $8,000 could go a long way. Which leads us to…
Getting the jewelry appraised
If you decide to keep the jewelry, you should get them appraised for the estate.
You’ll need this if things are to be divided up, donated, sold or auctioned.
No matter what, there is no right or wrong. Only what your heart tells you.
Keep the jewelry, or bury it?
Do what makes you happy inside.
Do what feels right.
They wouldn’t want it any other way.
Have you been in this situation before? Do you have any advice? Let us know in the comments below…
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