Our funeral directors strive to provide quiet support to the family during a time of great emotional stress, and attend to all aspects of the funeral service in a professional and caring way. A funeral is a gathering of family and friends after the death of a loved one that allows them the opportunity to mourn, support each other and pay tribute to the life of the deceased. It often consists of one or more of the following components:

Funeral Service

A formal or informal ceremony or ritual prior to burial or cremation, a funeral service often provides a sense of closure to family and friends. Although your faith or culture may dictate some elements of a funeral service, you may want to personalize other elements of the service. At a funeral service, a casket or urn is present, though you may choose to have the casket open or closed.

Visitation, Wake or Viewing

Held the night before or immediately prior to the funeral service, the visitation – also called a wake or a viewing – provides a way for friends and acquaintances to pay respects and offer condolences to your family. As with the funeral service, you may want to decide if you want an open or closed casket should one be present. Hours (2-5 PM & 7-9 PM).

Memorial or Tribute Service

At a memorial or tribute service, a casket or urn is usually not present. Otherwise similar to a funeral or visitation, a memorial service gives family and friends a time to come together in your memory and celebrate your life.

Graveside Service

As its name implies, a graveside service may be held at the grave site just prior to burial of a casket or urn, and usually consists of final remarks, prayers or memories. The service may occur after or in place of a funeral service.


A variety of cremation options exists. Some families prefer traditional visiting hours at the funeral home, followed by a church or funeral home service prior to cremation. Other families choose to have a public or private memorial reception at the funeral home after cremation; or immediate cremation followed by a memorial or graveside service at a date that is convenient for the family or those traveling from a distance.

Direct Burial or Cremation

Our directors stand ready to help your family arrange for any type of funeral service. A direct burial or cremation is when there are no services before a burial or cremation take place. Should be there a need to place an obituary in the local newspaper, memorial cards as a keepsake for friends and family, or an urn to house cremated remains, our directors will guide your family through a meaningful memorialization. We can also arrange for a memorial service after burial or cremation take place. If desired this may give family and friends time to share and express their love while avoiding cost associated with a traditional funeral.

Hess-Miller Funeral Home offers services and selections to arrange any of these services. We also stand ready to help you arrange any other type of service, to meet the requirements of your faith or your family traditions.

The following are specific services our Funeral Directors will assist you with:

  • The transfer of the deceased from the place of death to the funeral home
  • Professional care of the deceased, which may include sanitary washing, embalming, dressing, hairdressing, cosmetology, and casketing
  • An arrangement conference with the family to plan specific details for the funeral
  • Locating the deceased's doctor to sign a death certificate; then filing this certificate at the local health department; obtaining the requested amount of certified death certificates for the family
  • Obtaining all necessary permits and authorizations, as required.
  • Preparing an obituary to be placed in any newspapers requested by the family
  • Contacting local cemeteries or crematory, as required
  • Care and arrangement of floral pieces, and delivery to the family's residence after the funeral
  • Arranging for Pallbearers and motor equipment, including limousines, as required
  • Ordering special floral pieces at the family's request
  • Arranging for Cash Advances for cemetery expenses, clergy honorariums, music, funeral escorts, and custom acknowledgment
  • Contacting Fraternal or Military organizations to take part in the ceremony
  • Arranging for a personalized remembrance package, consisting of a guest register book, memorial folders, acknowledgments
  • Assist with Social Security and Veteran Affairs
  • Filing of life insurance claims, pending funeral home assignment clearance.

Video Tribute

Our video tribute package includes two personalized DVD's. Please provide us with 50 photos of your choice. They will be scanned and arranged into a viewable sideshow movie (with or without music ) to be played on our video screens during visitation. All chapels are equipped with Flat Screen Televisions.

You may also use our video equipment if you have your own video( please use blank DVD's and be sure to "loop" slideshow)

We also are equipped with magnetic memory boards & easels for traditional photo collages. Please bring as many Framed photos as you see fit. Personal items and memorabilia displays are encouraged to add personal touch.

Custom Printing

• Photo Prayer Cards

Photo Prayer Cards (Prayer Card stock is chosen from our very large selections. The name, date of death and personalized prayer are printed on the back of the card. A photo may also be used on the back of the card.)

• Prayer Cards without Photo

• Acknowledgement Cards

• Personalized Acknowledgement Cards

• Register Books

• Announcement Boards

• Donation and In Leu of Flowers

Custom Services

  • Military Honors Service
  • Memorial Candles
  • Video Tributes commemorating the life of the individual
  • Memory board display (photos)
  • Memorabilia display
  • Consultation with headstone/memorial marker professional.

All of these listed details and many others are overseen by the experienced and dedicated directors of Hess Miller Funeral Home. Each member of the Hess Miller Funeral Home team appreciates the trust placed in us by the families we serve. We are dedicated to serving our friends and neighbors during their greatest time of need. We hope to always live up to and deserve that trust.


The decision to preplan your funeral is a loving gesture for those you leave behind, relieving them of decision-making at a stressful time. It is a simple process that doesn't take much time and allows you to make specific choices such a music, flowers, and type of service for your funeral based on your personal preferences. Preplanning also sets aside funeral funding so your family will not have to deal with monetary considerations.

Pre Plan™ is a unique secured trust fund holding monies set aside for individuals' burial expenses. This special co-mingled trust was established in 1988 by the New York State Funeral Directors Association in order to provide a completely safe and competitive vehicle for funeral directors to place their clients' prefunded accounts.

How PrePlan™ Works ...

  • You meet with a funeral director who offers PrePlan™
  • Select desired merchandise and services
  • Receive a fully itemized statement and contract
  • Make check payable to PrePlan™
  • Funeral director forwards contract and check to the PrePlan™ offices for immediate deposit
  • You receive a deposit acknowledgment shortly thereafter
  • At completion of funeral, payment is forwarded directly to the funeral director

How is PrePlan™ Administered

A PrePlan™ account is opened and your money is deposited on the exact day the PrePlan™ Trustees receive your contract, social security number certification and payment. Your account begins earning the highest rate of interest in the PrePlan's time deposit, pooled investment. Interest will vary with money market and CD rates. Funds are placed in FDIC insured bank deposit account(s), certificates of deposit in a bank with in the State of New York and other investments permitted by law .

What if you are applying for SSI/Medicaid Assistance...

If you or someone in your family will be applying for assistance under one of these programs, contact an Advance Planning Director at Hess-Miller Funeral Home. Federal and State law provide that properly trusted assets intended for the payment of funeral expenses will not be considered as a resource when eligibility is determined. Setting aside monies for burial expenses is now extremely simplified. See our Advance Planning Director for further information.

NOTE: New York State law mandates that II contracts for prefunded funerals executed by applicants for, or recipients of Medicaid be Irrevocable.

More About PrePlan™ ...

Administered by the state trade association for funeral directors, PrePlan™ offers both revocable and irrevocable accounts. Each revocable account in the PrePlan™ is, at all times, totally refundable to the Purchaser with interest and without penalty. Irrevocable accounts are set up for applicants for, or recipients of SSI/Medicaid and must be nonrefundable to comply with Chapter 660 of New York State Law.

Inflation protection

By purchasing your funeral in advance, your account will receive competitive interest rates in order to keep up with inflation and rising cost of cash advances. With funeral costs rising an average 5% per year, it's a real benefit for your loved ones as well as sound financial planning.