Columbia Friends Meeting – CFM (updated 8/7/23)
Green and Cremation Burials at 120 Pisgah Church Road
Green burial is in keeping with the Quaker tradition of simplicity and environmental sustainability. It allows the grave site a complete return to nature. Either a biodegradable coffin (cardboard, wood) or a shroud is recommended for burial and a flat stone or other natural object can mark the grave.
Although cremation is not considered totally “green” due to the carbon released during the cremation process, as with green burials, the grave site has a complete return to nature. Ashes may be buried in a biodegradable container, container free, or scattered.
CFM members/attenders/family members who wish to have a green burial or have cremations buried at the CFM property should complete a Burial Application form (it can be kept on file if completed before death). At the time of need, the designated coordinator for the burial, can use the following as a guide:
Steps to take –
Notify the clerk of Columbia Friends (contact information: Columbia Friends Meeting)
Green Burial with minimal assistance: 3 different circumstances
Death at home, no hospice: call 911. An ambulance will come. The body will be taken to the morgue at Prisma Richland where a Burial-Removal-Transit (BRT) will be issued. It will name the person acting as funeral director/coordinator. Go to DHEC Office of Vital Statistics, within 5 days, where staff will work with family to issue a Death Certificate. (Medical certification of death by the physician or APRN (Advanced Practice Registered Nurse/or coroner) must be completed and returned to the funeral coordinator within forty-eight (48) hours of pronouncement.)
A form provided online at the DHEC website, “South Carolina Certificate of Death Non-Funeral Home Worksheet,” could be completed ahead of time for an expected death and could also be used for a sudden death. This would provide the necessary information for the funeral coordinator to start the process to complete a Death Certificate.
Death at home with hospice: The hospice nurse and/or doctor will assess the death. The coroner’s office should be contacted to transport the body to their morgue where a BRT will be issued in the same manner as above. If a burial is planned soon after the death, it may be an option to keep the body at home if desired; please check with the coroner for details.
Death in hospital: the body stays in the hospital’s morgue until transported for burial. Hospital personnel are on hand to complete the BRT.
Grave preparation arrangements (digging and filling): When asked, several years ago, two companies with proper equipment for digging a grave said they would be glad to be on a list: Green Solutions, Chris Walker, 803-518-4686, and Ray Cruz (in pool business), 803-629-1833. However, if preferred, consider trying a local landscape company with the proper equipment or a funeral home. Although Friends have had limited experience with burials at CFM, two funeral homes have been used in the past and were considered helpful: Shives Funeral Home and Kornegay Funeral Home.
The Columbia Friends Meeting (CFM) will provide a burial site for the member/attender/family member of the Meeting at no charge. This does not include an offer of a memorial service or use of the building. Families must make separate arrangements for a ceremony, memorial service, or other funeral needs.
The funeral coordinator needs to arrange the delivery of the deceased and notify the Clerk (info on web site, Columbia Friends Meeting) of the day and time of transporting. CFM will suggest a site for the burial.
If a grave marker is desired, use a flat stone or other natural object. We ask that no borders, gravel, artificial flowers or ornamentation be used. Please note that the cemetery grounds are often in a natural/informal state and are mainly cared for by willing volunteers from the Columbia Friends; we encourage donations of money, CFM suggested improvements, and/or volunteer time to help with these efforts (mailing address below).
Completed form may be returned to mailing address:
Columbia Friends Meeting, P.O. Box 1832, Columbia, SC 29202.
Acknowledgement of receipt will be mailed or emailed to you.
Physical location of the cemetery:
Columbia Friends Meeting, 120 Pisgah Church Road, Columbia SC 29203