Famous Sea Burials
Probably the most famous sea burial in the history of the United States is a notorious one: that of slain terrorist Osama Bin Laden. It may be surprising to note that many articles about sea burials have noted that Bin Laden’s burial at sea – administered by United States Military personnel who wanted to be sure that a land burial site for the terrorist would not become a pilgrimage spot for future decades of followers – has not led to a decrease in the number of people who have been buried at sea. Other sea burials of note have been actor Robin Williams, film maker H.G. Wells, numerous victims of the sinking of the Titanic, Nazi war criminal Adolf Eichmann, singer Janis Joplin, musician Stan Getz, actor Vincent Price, Astronaut Neil Armstrong, and Atholl McGregor, an internationally known justice from Hong Kong.
So, as we say, burials at sea have been a tradition for centuries, and they continue to be a popular form of disposal for a deceased person’s body. In this day in which many people automatically assume that a person who has died will either be buried or cremated, it is important to remember that there is another option, laden with patriotic tradition, in fact. It may seem, at first glance to be a tradition best suited for those few who have spent their lives on the water – and it is certainly well suited for that – but the land-lubbers of the world can rest assured that the sea has plenty of space for them too.