Saying Goodbye to The Fisherman

I recently read the book “Smoke Gets in Your Eyes and Other Lessons from the Crematory” by Caitlin Doughty. It is a witty and thought provoking look at the history of caring for the dead and how the process has been sanitized by today’s funeral industry. The author explains the process of cremation in some detail – all very fascinating if you are interested in options to the ‘casket in the ground’ type of burial.

The Car Guy’s dad, The Fisherman, passed away in October 2017. The Fisherman was cremated. It was a good choice because a number of events, including the weather, made it preferable for us to hold a burial service the following June.

As the date for interment approached, our family discussed what kind of special box or urn we would use for the ashes. We decided that a wine bottle in a wood presentation box would be an excellent choice because The Fisherman had made his own wine for decades.

The Car Guy filled one wine bottle with ashes for the cemetery. With the remaining ashes, he filled several half bottles and three spice size jars.

A half bottle now sits on a shelf in The Car Guys Garage, a place where father and son had worked every Wednesday for many years building and fixing things, including  a Yellow Challenger T/A, a Corvette, and a Fargo half ton.

The spice jars were perfect for the ‘road trips’ where his ashes were scattered – at the farm where he was raised and two of his favourite fishing places.

As for the Cemetery Interment, we knew it was going to be a ‘do it yourself’ project because the cemetery was a very  rural, ‘old school’ sort of place that let you do that sort of thing. We also knew the ground was rock hard. But we didn’t need a very wide hole, so a post hold digger was the logical tool to use.

The Fisherman’s Daughter conducted the service, a lunch was served at a country hall, and a two day Family Reunion was held at a rural retreat – all were the perfect way to say good-bye to The Fisherman.

If people concentrated on the really important things in life, there’d be a shortage of fishing poles.
-Doug Larson –

14 thoughts on “Saying Goodbye to The Fisherman

  1. What a fabulous send off; I’m sure The Fisherman approved! Funerals and burials absolutely should be discussed before someone dies (and afterwards, its vitally important to honour their wishes). My mother was very clear about what she wanted (for herself and my Dad) and I made sure it happened as she’d laid out (despite attempted interference from various of my siblings). I’ve discussed my wishes with my husband and put them in writing and passed copies to both children. I want my “last hurrah” to be about ME, not about them (and I also want it to be easy for them to carry out). Pre-planning (and pre-paying) should be part of everyone’s future planning.


    1. Good advice – especially the easy to carry out part. That is much easier with pre-planning and pre-paying.


    1. This really is the kind of story that needs to be told more often. As a society, we have let ourselves lose touch with an important ritual.


  2. What a lovely story … especially the part about the spice jars and taking The Fisherman on trips to spread his ashes. There was thought and obviously a lot of love behind this.


    1. My daughter did a video of her and her husband spreading the ashes on the water off the coast of Vancouver. She held up the jar and said “Grandpa would love this – there is still a price label on the bottom of the jar and these capers were a real bargain!”


  3. We have always told our sons that when we die do the cheapest thing possible. If there is any money left for them use it to go have fun in our honor. I love the idea of putting the ashes in the places the people loved.


Comments are closed.