Aquamation services offered at Oxford funeral home

Published: Jun. 4, 2021 at 10:55 AM CDT
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OXFORD, Ala. (WBRC) - A funeral home in East Alabama is the first in the state to offer aquamation, an eco-friendly alternative to fire cremation.

The state approved Miller’s Funeral Home to start doing aquamation in April. A process officials in the industry say is more gentle on the body and better for the environment.

Patrick Miller, President of Miller Funeral Home in Oxford, says his family has been in the funeral business since the 1970s.

“Instead of going through such a high temperature of cremation process with the flame, it’s done gently by water,” says Miller, “Alkaline chemicals, and a little bit of heat within the water.”

Miller says he spent months learning virtually and also spent time learning hands-on to be sure the process was right to help families during difficult times.

“Our bodies are naturally around the neutral 7 pH, and with the chemicals that we use, the sodium hydroxide, potassium hydroxide, it actually increases that up to a base around 13,” says Miller. “At the end of the process we use CO2, which a lot of your restaurants use that for your drinks and all that stuff. It brings the base level back to a neutral.”

Miller says it’s also more affordable than cremation.

“Our flame cremation starts off at $2,375. Our aquamation is $1,295 right now,” says Miller. “That’s simply to get it going, get people talking about it. Offering that price for folks who need a cheaper alternative.”

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