The ownership of Halligan-McCabe-DeVries partnered with three Illinois funeral homes to form Black Hawk Crematory, located in Rock Island.  For those of you who are not sure of the cremation process, please find listed below an explanation of how cremation works.

Cremation is performed by placing the deceased in a casket or other container and then placing the casket or other container into a cremation chamber or retort, where they are subjected to intense heat and flame.  During the cremation process, it may be necessary to open the cremation chamber and reposition the deceased in order to facilitate a complete and thorough cremation.  Through the use of a suitable fuel, incineration of the container and contents is accomplished and all substances are consumed or driven off, except bone fragments (calcium compounds) and metal (including dental gold and silver and other non-human materials) as the temperature is not sufficient to consume them.

Due to the nature of the cremation process, any personal possessions or valuable materials, such as dental gold or jewelry (as well as any body prosthesis or dental bridgework), that are left with the decedent and not removed from the casket or container prior to cremation, will be destroyed or, if not destroyed, will be disposed of by the crematory.

As the casket or container will not normally be opened by the crematory, arrangements must be made with the funeral home to remove any such possessions or valuables prior to the time that the decedent is transported to the crematory.

Following a cooling period, the cremated remains, which will normally weigh several pounds in the case of an average size adult, are then swept or raked from the cremation chamber.  The crematory makes a reasonable effort to remove all the cremated remains from the cremation chamber, but it is impossible to remove all of them as some dust and other residue from the process are always left behind.  In addition, while every effort will be made to avoid co-mingling, inadvertent or incidental co-mingling of minute particles of cremated remains from the residue of previous cremations is a possiblilty.

After the cremated remains are removed from the cremation chamber, all non-combustible materials, such as bridgework and materials from the casket or container, such as hinges, latched, nails, ets., will be separated and removed from the human bone fragments by visible or magnetic selection and will be disposed of by the crematory.

When the cremated remains are removed from the cremation chamber, the skeletal remains are removed from the cremation chamber, the skeletal remains often often recognizable bone fragments.  Unless otherwise specified, after the bone fragments have been separated from the other material, they will then be mechanically processed (pulverized).  This process of crushing or grinding may cause incidental co-mingling of the remains with the residue from the processing of previously cremated remains.  These granulated particles of unidentifiable dimensions will be virtually unrecognizable as human remains.  The human remains are then placed in an urn or container.

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