What to wear if you are a pallbearer?

Unless the family expresses a desire otherwise, it is customary in most cases for pallbearers to wear a suit, sports coat, and optional tie. It is not necessary, of course, but the dress represents the dignity & respect of the role.

What color should a pallbearer wear?

Pallbearers need to dress appropriately. Unless the bereaved specify otherwise, men should wear dark, solid suits with white shirts and conservative ties, and women should wear dark pantsuits or dresses. You really don't want to trip when carrying the casket.

Is it heavy to be a pallbearer?

Is Carrying a Coffin Heavy for Pallbearers? Yes, carrying a coffin can be burdensome for pallbearers. The body, casket, and hardware may weigh 400 pounds. If that weight is divided evenly among six pallbearers, each one is responsible for about 66 pounds.

How do you accept being a pallbearer?

Let's review 8 tips for pallbearer etiquette.
  1. Understand the honor you've been given. Carrying the casket is a privilege that should be treated with poise, respect, and dignity. ...
  2. Talk to the family or funeral director about expectations. Every funeral is different. ...
  3. Watch your step. ...
  4. Turn off or silence your phone.

Why do pallbearers wear white?

A pallbearer is one of several participants who help carry the casket at a funeral. They may wear white gloves in order to prevent damaging the casket and to show respect to the deceased person.

How to be a Great Pallbearer!

How strong should you be to be a pallbearer?

Or, you may have been selected because of your physical strength. Being a pallbearer requires that you help carry a heavy coffin at waist height with the help of five to seven other pallbearers. The weight of both the decedent and the casket varies but expect to help bear 300 pounds of weight or more.

Can you cry as a pallbearer?

Try to keep your emotions in check

No one will fault you for letting a few tears slip, but if you're concerned you won't be able to do your duty without heavy crying, you might want to decline the invitation to be a pallbearer. It's best to keep a straight face.

How much weight does a pallbearer carry?

Pallbearers will have to carry the casket with the body inside, so they will have to transport the body's weight and the coffin. 370 to 400 pounds is the final weight that pallbearers will carry if the casket is standard sized, 200 pounds heavy, whereas the adult body is 200 pounds (male) or 170 pounds (female).

How much do you tip a pallbearer?

Because these are volunteers who are close to the family or the deceased, it's not typical to tip. If you need to hire pallbearers, however, a small tip might be appropriate. If the hired pallbearers are not a part of the funeral staff, tipping anywhere from $5-15 is fair for this service.

Do you need to be strong to carry a coffin?

You don't have to be tall, able-bodied or particularly strong, and the role of bearer is not restricted to any particular gender or age. If you are not able to carry the coffin because of your health or strength, you can still arrange to walk alongside it, putting a hand on the coffin without bearing its weight.

How old should a pallbearer be?

They can be men and women usually over the age of 16. When asked to be a pallbearer, it's an honor and very few people decline this request. Pallbearers play a crucial role in the funeral service, as they're in the public eye.

Can pallbearers sit with family?

At some funerals, pallbearers sit with their family or friends in the congregation. If this is the case, just make sure that you speak with the funeral director so you understand when you are required to leave your seat to help move the casket.

Why do they cover the legs in a casket?

It is a common practice to cover the legs as there is swelling in the feet and shoes don't fit. As part of funeral care, the body is dressed and preserved, with the prime focus on the face. Post embalming, bodies are often placed without shoes; hence covering the legs is the way to offer a dignified funeral.

Should a son be a pallbearer for his mother?

Whether it is a father, mother, son, daughter, uncle, aunt, cousin, husband, wife, or best friend, it is crucial that a pallbearer is emotionally, mentally and physically capable of carrying out the task. If any person is unfit mentally, emotionally or physically, they can serve as an honorary pallbearer.

Do you gift a pallbearer?

There is no standard for pallbearer gifts, but those who opt to provide them should make sure that the gesture is meaningful and honors the service—even if just a small token of gratitude.

Why are gloves left on a casket?

As early as the 1700s, gloves were given to pallbearers by the deceased's family to handle the casket. They were a symbol of purity, and considered a symbol of respect and honor.

How common are female pallbearers?

It is not common to see women carrying the casket, but that is not to say that there is anything wrong with women taking up this honourable duty in a funeral service.

Why is the head always to the left in a casket?

The head is commonly turned to the left in a casket to ensure the body looks more comfortable and peaceful, while also allowing mourners a better view of the deceased's face. Occasionally, the head is also turned to the left for reasons related to Christian traditionalism.

Is it rude to turn down being a pallbearer?

The family will typically choose six men to attend the casket (sometimes “honorary pallbearers” -who have a strictly symbolic role-are also chosen). The invitation to be a pallbearer is a great honor and one you cannot refuse except for the most serious of reasons.

Do pallbearers wear flowers?

Upon arrival, a Funeral Director will pin a boutonniere to your lapel. This is another reason why a suit coat or blazer is preferred. If this is not the case, please wear the kind of clothing that will easily support the placement of the boutonniere without it being cumbersome in any way.

Why do you carry a coffin feet first?

Coffins are carried feet first simply because of health and safety, rather than any kind of ceremonial tradition.

Who should not be a pallbearer?

Similarly, pallbearers are normally not any younger than 16 due to the extreme emotional turmoil that can come from being that close to the dead body of a loved one. Teenagers, especially, might assert that they can handle the pressure, but keep their mental health in mind.

Do pallbearers have to be the same height?

Think about everyone's heights

If you're carrying a coffin on your shoulders, it's much easier if all of the pallbearers are around the same height. But if that's not the case, don't worry. Make sure people of similar heights are opposite each other on either side of the coffin, and put shorter people at the front.

Are sons ever pallbearers?

Siblings, adult children, grown-up grandchildren or close friends, colleagues or nephews and nieces are frequently selected as pallbearers. There is no written rule as to who can handle this task.