NY Times: Grief is Difficult for Families Who Have Not Received Loved Ones Remains
The New York Times has published another excellent article, this time about the logistical difficulties of having traditional funerals and memorial services after the World Trade Center disaster. Many religious and social rites are made more difficult or impossible by the absence of the dead person's body.
This points out one of the great problems underlying this tragedy. Many families are simply unable to bring themselves to hold services for a dead relative whose body has not been found. Yet, many bodies will take months to identify because they have been dismembered. Many more will never be identified because they were incinerated by fire.
People need to begin to grieve. The easiest way to get through this would be for funeral or memorial services to be held soon. This way, friends and distant relatives can support the family of the deceased person. Until such services are announced, it is impossible for anyone but the immediate family to express their sense of loss.