1.Your spouse will depart Iraq and fly into Dover Port Mortuary, located at Dover A.F.B, Dover, Deleware.
* They will be escorted the whole trip over
* Typically takes 2 to 3 days but can be up to a week
* As soon as your spouse is on the inbound list you will be notified
2. Your loved one will arrive at Dover, Deleware and is ceremonially transported into the facility.
* You can be there to view the ceremony but make sure to coordinate this with you C.A.O. beforehand.
3. Autopsy and Preparation
* This was one of the hardest steps for me. You can not choose for them to forgo the autopsy. Below there may be things hard to read or you can just skip over them if you like…
* This usually will take 2 to 3 days
* Your spouse will be identified via fingerprints, DNA or dental
* You can request an autopsy report if you would like
* The condition of his body will be reported to you as well as his viewability
* From there you will make your decisions on funeral homes, cremation, etc.
* You can have their remains cremated at Dover if wanted
* Remember that you have as long as needed to make these decisions
* At this point an escort from your spouse’s home unit will escort them home. You can also escort them or make a special request. Don’t be afraid to ask.
* Your spouse will arrive embalmed and dressed in their Class A uniform (unless you specify otherwise) and placed in the casket of your choice (or if cremated, urn). Your C.A.O. can coordinate any other clothing to be sent to Dover.
* Good job! Once you’ve made these decisions you have put alot behind you.
4. They will be flown from Dover to your location of choice.
* Your loved one can fly either commercial or military aircraft, whichever you desire. Let your C.A.O. know which you would prefer and remember never to feel obligated to do one or the other.
* Whoever has been chosen to escort your spouse will carry any of their posthumous awards as well as any sentimental effects they had on them at their time of death.
5. Your spouse will arrive at the funeral home of your choice.
* Once they have arrived final planning can be conducted for their ceremony.
6. The Ceremony
* Hopefully all else has gone well up to this point. Just remember to breathe.