Green burials becoming more commonplace - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Reported by Chip Washington

Green burials becoming more commonplace

HERNANDO, MS (WMC-TV) - Funerals are now taking a greener approach, and it is a trend that is catching on. Green burials are not necessarily new, but are now becoming more commonplace throughout the country.

For one 20-year old man, his dying wish was to be returned to the earth -- naturally. 

20-year old Justin Borek's life may have ended much too soon after a tragic car accident in October, but his parents said he had already planned out his final arrangements after seeing a story on TV.

"It's very important for people to know your last wishes and make sure that it happens. He saw it on the Discovery Channel, researched it on Wikipedia, and then just kind of spread the word," stepmother Jennifer Borek said.

It is called a green burial, which is a very natural state of being put to rest.  There is no embalming --  the body is wrapped in a natural cloth, and placed in a biodegradable box. It was the way Justin wanted it.

"He wore his Croc flip-flops, his jeans, his hoodie and his glasses. And we put him to rest in his natural state so he could return back to the earth naturally," father Brett Borek said.

Hernando Funeral Home made the arrangements. Owner Brent Taylor said in his 20 years in the funeral business, he had read about green burials but had never been asked to do one.

"My initial reaction was I thought it was going to be more difficult than it turned out to find a cemetery that would allow a green burial. The first cemetery I called would not allow it," Taylor said.

He was laid to rest at Goodrum Cemetery just outside of Hernando. The Borek's believe their son is at peace. 
Taylor said that most cemeteries require that a body be placed in an enclosed container. He also said that as the world becomes more eco-conscious, you could see an increase in requests for 'green burials' like Justin's.

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