Funeral Doves


The funeral service of a loved one is a very emotional time. The releasing of white doves at funerals and memorials is a meaningful and touching way of commemorating the life of your loved one. We find ourselves torn between surrendering our loved one’s life and God’s promise of a much better life after death. A dove release gives closure and a sense of enlightenment that the Spirit has lifted and become free.

The ceremony allows for a release of emotion and a sense of peace and healing as the doves ascend into the sky, circle the gravesite and fly away into the heavens.

A beautiful White Dove Release ceremony, as a tribute to your loved one, can be very uplifting and may take place at the cemetery, funeral home or any outside venue.

Ceremonial Doves of Tidewater offer a number of white dove release services.
We can assist you with a dove release for a private memorial, a public tribute, or a meaningful white dove release for your loved one’s funeral, customized to your religious beliefs. We will coordinate all services with your funeral or memorial director, or with you ahead of time, so there is nothing for you to worry about on the day of the service. We will have our dove release equipment set up prior to your arrival at the cemetery and do our best to see that all goes as smoothly as possible.

An Affordable Memorable Gift

This time of mourning can be a difficult time, and trying to find a way to express your sympathy can be equally difficult.
Instead of, or in addition to flowers, a White Dove Release is one of the most memorable gifts to give to a loved one.
Family and friends can give a ‘dove release’ to the family of the deceased.

Release Choices:

     These releases would normally take place at the conclusion of the graveside or memorial service. The result is a very beautiful ending to the service and a warm memory made for your family and friends.

The Spirit Dove Release


The Spirit Dove

One pure white dove is released by a family member, by hand or basket, as a symbolic tribute to the departed loved one’s spirit leaving the earth and rising up into the heavens.


The Trinity Release – (the most popular)


Trinity Doves

One Spirit Dove is released by a family member representing the love one’s spirit, followed by three doves representing the Trinity (Father, the Son, and Holy Spirit) or (past, present, and future). The three doves take wing from a basket; join the Spirit Dove, and together in flight, then fly home. This symbolizes the Trinity accompanying of the departed spirit to heaven.

Family members and friends have expressed how comforting it feels to release the dove, how it opens up the grieving process, and how it allows them to say a final farewell and let go.

Service in the Line of Duty Release


I Salute My Follow  Veterans

This free release is to honor local military, law enforcement and firefighting personnel killed in the line of duty. The White Doves will be released after the
playing of Taps and a moment of silence. This release is subject to the number of doves available and prior scheduling.

We have a variety of Poems and Readings that may be read prior to the release by a Family Member or the Clergy.

A handler in appropriate attire will bring the doves to the service or internment and help arrange the release. If family members choose to hand release the doves, we will assist with this.

Our beautiful white birds are much loved and many hours of training and care assures their safe flight home, following a release. A Dove Release is a unique alternative to a less environmentally friendly release of balloons. For the safety of the birds, doves will not be released in inclimate weather or in less than one hour prior to sunset.

Let us help you cherish the memory of your love one for the rest of your life.

“Oh that I had wings like a dove, I would fly away and be a rest.” –Psalm 55:6

Don Kane

Cell (757) 812-0247


Cathrine at Grave site original size

Child holding a Dove at the Cemetery


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  1. Tom Stevens on October 21, 2014 at 8:14 pm said: Edit
    Don, I cannot begin to express the outpouring of emotion I experienced at the Dove Release at the culmination of my brother Jim Stevens’ Memorial Service on October 14, 2014 at Hidenwood Presbyterian Church.
    This was my first experience with a Ceremonial Dove Release and I must say that I was overwhelmed. What an incredibly heart-felt and spiritual way to say your final goodbyes to a loved one. I very much appreciated you taking the time to share with me your experiences and motivation which moved you to establish this offering. Your comment about the change in demeanor in children at a graveside service with the release of the doves is a wonderful testimonial to the simplicity, beauty and deep meaning of such an event.
    We are most fortunate to have you providing this “ministry” here on the peninsula.
    God Bless you and your family,
    Tom Stevens

  2. Don, incorporating the dove release into our memorial service was a very comforting way for our entire family, especially the grandchildren, to say goodbye and begin the healing process after losing someone they loved so much. Releasing the beautiful white dove representing the Spirit of our loved one, followed by three other doves representing the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, added peace to the moment. The message delivered through this ceremony was so special and meaningful to all those who attended. I would highly recommend incorporating this ceremony into any memorial service.

  3. As we did not have a graveside service after my Mom’s funeral, we found the Dove Release provided a special touch to the end of the Memorial Service. It provided a wonderful way for my brothers, sister & I to say goodbye to Mom. You made every effort to make this our unique experience, and succeeded. We very much appreciated it.
    We are fortunate to have you providing this “ministry” here on the peninsula.
    God Bless you and all your family,

  4. L. Warden

    Don, thank you for providing a wonderful closure to the memorial for my family member. The releasing of the doves was a very special part of the memorial for me. I appreciate your prompt arrival time and how you allowed family members to gently handle the birds for the release.
    Your service provides an uplifting release to a somber event.

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  5. Don, I want to thank you for your extraordinary professionalism with releasing the doves such a wonderful ceremony and service,by having the family members participate by releasing the spirit dove followed by Trinity father, son and Holy Spirit what a beautiful and heartwarming presentation that truly touched the hearts of each and every family member. I would recommend this service to anyone, again thank you.😇

  6. Don, Thank you so much for your service! Your professionalism was amazing and the Dove Release really captured the moment we were looking for. This service provided our family and friends the closure needed to move forward. We were so amazed at how a simple act could provide so much peace. Our memorial service was complete with this added touch. I would highly recommend the Trinity release for a memorial service. Thank you.

  7. Don,

    Thank you very much for conducting the dove release after my son’s funeral. You explained the meaning very professionally and it really touched our hearts. So many in attendance said that they had never seen a dove release ceremony before but were very impressed. It was a beautiful ending to a very difficult day.

  8. We are still talking about the Dove release for my Goddaughter Shata Anderson. It was beautiful. Thank you Don for your services. Looking forward to using your services again. ❤😇

  9. He was absolutely awesome. I really appreciated him doing the dove release for my mom. He did have to travel a little further than normal because we were deep in the country. He was very respectful, professional, and on time. My family and I were very satisfied with the services of the dove release. He will come highly recommended to everyone that is in need of his services from here on out. Thank You very much Mr. Don.

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