SHAWNEE, Okla. (KFOR) – A funeral home in Shawnee is the first in the state to perform “aquamations”.

According to McElyea and Owens Funeral Group, aquamation is a water-based cremation process. They say the Oklahoma Funeral Board gave them permission, making them the first and only location to perform aquamations in the state.

“I believe the aquamation process to be a much more natural way to handle a human cremation. Water is a primary need for life. Using the water process at the end of life with zero emissions is much more eco-friendly for our planet and offers families an option for a much gentler approach to the idea of cremation. We’re happy to be the first in Oklahoma to offer this choice, this option of aquamation for both humans and pets. We feel privileged to be able to do so.” said Robert Owens, McElyea and Owens Funeral Director.

According to officials, aquamation is a flame-less process. There is more than 90% energy savings and no direct emissions of greenhouse gases, mercury, or fossil fuels. Funeral officials say it’s “a gentle and respectful process” with 20% more ash remains available to be given to the family.

Bio-Response Solutions says the process is a combination of gentle water flow, temperature, and alkalinity. The combination speeds the natural process of tissue hydrolysis and the organic material is reduced to a simpler state.

“Upon opening our new Funeral Home in Shawnee, Bob and I both wanted to offer the very best for the residents of our hometown. In our first year, we’ve accomplished much toward that goal. Now, we are able to offer the technology we recognize to be the very best option in cremations to all Oklahomans. It brings us much joy. We feel very blessed for the opportunity which our aquamation services provide for families and their pets.” said Mike McElyea, McElyea and Owens Funeral Director.

For more information and testimonials, visit this link.