FAQs

Click on the questions below to view the answer.

What is a Celebration of Life Center? Is that different from a funeral home?

The Celebration of Life Center opened in October of 2018.  We are a licensed funeral home.  Quite simply, we are a funeral home without the words "funeral home" on the sign.

While we operate as a funeral home, we like to think we are a bit different than the other funeral homes in our area.  You will find from the moment you enter through our front doors that you are exposed to large rooms, with high, open ceilings and an overall feeling of space around you.  No one wants to be cramped in small "boxxy" rooms and we can guarantee you that will not be the case at our state-of-the-art facility.

We also feature a very large outdoor patio where we can hold outdoor services, gatherings, or just relax with your family and friends.

A Celebration of Life can be whatever you want it to be.  We are here to help you create the perfect, most memorable event possible.  We have the space, the technology, the staff, and the talent to do just that.  Give us a call or stop in for a tour of our Celebration of Life Center.

Where is the Celebration of Life Center Located?

Our new facility is located at 1717 Devney Drive in Altoona, WI  54720. 

DIRECTIONS:  Follow Hwy 12 into Altoona (from either the east or west).  Follow to McCann Drive and turn North on McCann Drive (Note Altoona Family Restaurant is located at this intersection).  Follow McCann Drive for one VERY LONG block.  Turn right on Devney Drive and go 1/4 mile.  You will see us on the right.

Are you a cremation society?

Although the words “cremation society” are not in our name, we offer all the services a cremation society is known for.  Many families we serve have actually come to know us as the Chippewa Valley Cremation Society.  It is also worth noting that we provide cremation services outside of the Chippewa Valley as well.  We have served many families from all across the state in cities like Marshfield, Hayward, Black River Falls, and also Minneapolis/St. Paul.

Chippewa Valley Cremation Services is a licensed funeral home able to conduct business in both Wisconsin and Minnesota.

In October of 2018 we added our Celebration of Life Center located at 1717 Devney Drive in Altoona.  This provides even more options to the families we have been serving since 2010.

Does Chippewa Valley Cremation Services take care of filing the death certificate?

YES. In addition to collecting the information needed and filing the death certificate, we also notify social security, the coroner (if needed), and the Department of Veterans Affairs (if needed).

Do you offer pre-planning and pre-funded funerals & cremation services?

Yes.  Chippewa Valley Cremation Services can help you with every step of the process all the way to paying for your desired services in advance.  By pre-paying (or pre-funding) your services in advance you will "lock in" todays prices for services and merchandise (urns, caskets, burial vaults, etc).  We are licensed to write burial insurance through Funeral Directors Life Insurance Company, which deals exclusively with funeral homes pre-planning/pre-funding needs.

Do you offer payment plans for persons that wish to pre-fund their services?

YES.  In most cases one can pre-pay for thier funeral/cremation services over several months/years if desired.  All payment plans are set up with Chippewa Valley Cremation Services and administered through Funeral Directors Life Insurance Company.  We would be happy to explain your options in person or over the phone.  As with anything when you make multiple payments thier are advantages and disadvantages.  We are happy to explain both the pros and cons of "multi-pay" policies to you.  The common reason one would not qualify for a multi-payment plan is age and/or poor health.

Who writes the obituary?

That is up to you. We are here to assist you with writing an obituary anytime. In most cases we do this at the time of funeral arrangements at our office. If you desire, you can always email an obituary to us and we will submit it to whichever newspapers you desire. Obituaries also are immediately posted on our website (for life) and also on the obituary section at www.weau.com both at no charge to you.

Does Chippewa Valley Cremation Services offer Catholic funerals or memorial services (Mass of Christian Burial)?

YES.  In fact, we are 100% catholic owned & operated.  Chippewa Valley Cremation Services can assist you with everything from a traditional Mass of Christian Burial at your catholic church with the deceased casketed remains present, or also a Memorial Mass of Christian Burial, where cremated remains are present at Mass.  Burial can either take place immediately following mass or in the days to come if cremation would need to take place following mass.

Some families may desire to have the service at our funeral home, the Celebration of Life Center, in Altoona.  We are able to provide full funeral luncheon food & services at our Celebration of Life Center.

We serve all faiths, no matter what your traditions or religious beliefs.  We are here to serve you in any way we can.

What happens if I dont belong to a church and want to have a funeral/memorial service? Can Chippewa Valley Cremation Services help me?

No church = No problem.  With our Celebration of Life Center we are able host services & gatherings at our facility.  We can seat well in excess of 200 people comfortably in our main celebration center.  In additon we have additional indoor and outdoor seating (when weather appropriate).  All areas of our facility are covered by closed-circuit monitors so you can always see what is going on during a service from various spots in our facility.

In addition, we also own Thompson Funeral Home in Bloomer, WI.  For those families that live north of Eau Claire in the Bloomer/Chetek/Rice Lake area, our facility is available for you.  Please note that fees may vary between facilities.  You can learn more at www.thompsonfuneralhome.com

Rest assured that we are here to advise and inform of the many options available to you.

Can I still have a funeral even though cremation is my choice?

YES.  What makes cremation so great is that your family has many options when it comes to having a funeral service.  Some may want to have an open casket visitation and/or funeral prior to cremation taking place.  While others may want to have no viewing prior to cremation, but have a funeral after the cremation takes place (known as a memorial service).  In any case, Chippewa Valley Cremation Services is here and ready to help.  We are happy to help you do anything special to help personalize the service to that of the life of the deceased.  Most families that select to have an open casket choose to use a rental casket for visitation/service.  There is an option of purchasing a cremation orientated casket as well.

I am (or my family member is) on Medicaid and requires Medicaid assistance, can you help?

ABSOLUTELY. We are happy to assist you in determining and confirming that you or your loved one is eligible for Medicaid assistance through the State of WI. Assuming one qualifies for burial/cremation assistance from WI Medicaid, there can be UP TO $2500 of assistance available. Please call us at (715) 835-3333 or email info@chippewavalleycremation.com for more information.  We generally can determine if one qualifies for burial/cremation assistance in a matter of minutes (Monday-Friday).

Is Chippewa Valley Cremation licensed to practice in Minnesota?

YES. Chippewa Valley Cremation Services is a licensed funeral service provider in both Minnesota and Wisconsin. This means that if we are serving a family that loses a loved one anywhere in Minnesota, we are able to personally make a removal from any Minnesota Hospital, Nursing Home, etc. Because we are in such close proximately to many of the Twin Cities medical centers, having dual licensure is a good practice and our families take comfort knowing their loved one comes directly into our care, not via another out of state funeral home.

I have a funeral trust/burial policy at another funeral home. Can I transfer the beneficiary of the trust to Chippewa Valley Cremation Services?

YES. You can transfer the beneficiary of your trust to any funeral home in the U.S.A. Simply give us a call and we can draft the paper work for you to sign. The process is very simple and you do not have to have any contact with the other funeral home from where the trust is being transferred from.