Nothing adequately prepares you for the initial shock of a loved one’s death. Feelings of panic and helplessness may be overwhelming, but it’s important to know you are not alone. It is important to reach out to close relatives, friends and professionals for the help, support and comfort you need.
In some states, a doctor must be present to declare a person dead and state the cause of death. If the doctor isn’t sure of the cause of death, or if the death may have been caused by suicide, homicide or an accident, the county medical examiner or coroner may be called.
Call your funeral director and clergyperson right away, regardless of time of day or location. Immediate assistance and guidance from your funeral director will be extremely valuable to you, especially if you are faced with the added difficulty of making initial arrangements from a distance.