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The Sky is No Longer the Limit for Dispersing Cremated Remains

June 15, 2017

There are many creative ways to disperse cremated remains but none so far reaching as a rocket into space – whether orbiting the earth, landing on the moon or launched into deep space. Within Earth’s atmosphere, a loved one’s cremains can be carried into the clouds and dispersed by balloon, fireworks or airplane.

Memorial Spaceflights

Photo credit: Konstantin Shaklein/

For those who look to the stars and dream about space travel, there are now companies that offer memorial spaceflight services for cremated remains – also called space burial.

The Shooting Star Memorial from Elysium Space will place a portion of cremated remains on an upcoming flight of one of Elon Musk’s SpaceX rockets. The cremains orbit Earth peacefully for two years and then re-enter the Earth’s atmosphere to end the journey as a shooting star. Family and friends can follow the flight on a smart phone app. Elysium also offers a Lunar Memorial in which cremains are delivered to the surface of the Moon.

Customers receive a kit containing a custom ash capsule to collect the cremated remains of their loved one. The capsule is then sent back to Elysium Space and placed in the company’s memorial spacecraft. The Elysium memorial spacecraft is launched along with much larger commercial or scientific satellites which drive the launch schedule. The next memorial spacecraft will be on the upcoming Spaceflight’s SSO-A Mission aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 to be launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. For the most recent information regarding launch dates, check the launch schedule.

For more than twenty years, Celestis has launched cremated remains into near-space, Earth orbit, the Moon and beyond. Celestis provides a user-friendly tracking tool that lets loved ones track the mission’s progress. Family and friends can create additional remembrances and celebrations as the spacecraft orbits overhead or reaches key locations.

The Earth Rise service launches a symbolic portion of cremated remains or DNA to space and then returns them as “Flown Keepsakes” to family members and loved ones. Farther reaching options include launching cremains into orbit around Earth; lunar orbit or lunar landing; and deep space.

All Celestis launch events include a launch site tour, astronaut dinner, memorial service, and launch viewing from a preferred location. Most events are webcast which allows long-distance viewing for loved ones unable to attend.

Into the Stratosphere

There are several options for memorializing a loved one by dispersing cremated remains from high above the clouds – whether inside a helium balloon; shot off as fireworks or dropped by airplane.

Loved ones can now be transported to the skies in a giant helium-filled balloon from the Eternal Ascent Society. Cremated remains are placed in a five-foot biodegradable balloon which is filled with Helium. The balloon is transported to a site designated by the family and released. The balloon gently rises to 30,000 feet where it freezes, fractures and scatters the ashes on the wind.

Heavens Above Fireworks arranges special fireworks displays which incorporate cremation ashes into a spectacular memorial event. Heavenly Stars offers a variety of services, including self-fired tributes or amazing professional displays incorporating cremation ash into fireworks.

For an aerial scattering, your loved one’s cremains can be flown by plane and released over any location in the world. Wentzel Flying Service has scattered the ashes of over 15,000 loved ones from above the clouds in places such as the Grand Canyon, Maine and the Caribbean.

Costs vary for each of these services. Prices can range from just under $1,000 up to $12,000 and above. Our experienced funeral directors can help you sort through the options for dispersing cremains and explore the possibilities for you or a loved one. To speak to one of our knowledgeable funeral directors, please contact us at any of our locations or call our main office at 1-800-Keohane (800-536-4263).


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