Writing an obituary can be a daunting responsibility, as every family wants to honor the life lived and reflect on what made their loved one special. If you are the one charged with this task, we are here to offer advice. Though distilling someone’s life into a brief piece of writing may seem like quite an undertaking, all it requires is some thought and care.
Here at Simpson Funeral Home and Cremation Services, our knowledgeable staff understands the importance of an obituary that represents your loved one in all their uniqueness and passion for life. For our neighbors in Monaca and Rochester, we’ve put together some tips for writing an obituary your loved one would love.
The goal of an obituary is to honor the person who died while informing the reader about their life. Gathering biographical info is key, as you’ll want to include details about your loved one’s life and death. Take note of their hobbies, major accomplishments, and anything else mentionable you know about them.
Consult with friends and family.
Before you begin the bulk of the writing, ask friends and family how they would describe your loved one. Talk to them about any special memories or interesting stories. These can be favorite childhood games or major life events in your loved one’s adulthood. Try not to force humor where it doesn’t belong, but keep in mind that funny stories told well can add both depth and levity. A great way to personalize your obituary is to mention family members and close friends by name.
Try writing in the present tense first.
This approach can make you feel more connected to your loved one and help their personality shine through your words. You can always switch to the past tense in a later draft of the obituary. When it comes to structuring the piece, there are a lot of free obituary templates online to help you organize your own.
Include details for any upcoming memorial service or funeral.
At the end of the obituary, be sure to include relevant details about any upcoming funeral service, memorial, or visitation. If there is a fund or charity set up in your loved one’s name, remember to add information on how the reader can go about making a donation.
If you would like to view a range of obituaries, we have many featured on our website. Reading through them may bring inspiration as you see how others in our area capture the essence of someone close to them. Reach out to us with any questions about funeral services at Simpson.