Writing an obituary may seem like an impossible task, but it’s something most of us have to do in our lifetime and you’re definitely not alone if you’re finding it hard to write.
An obituary is generated to announce the death of a loved one and allows the family and friends to express sadness and celebrate the life of the person who has passed away. Thomas Brothers know a thing or two about writing an obituary, and in this post we are sharing our top tips.
Announcement of death
First and foremost, you traditionally begin with the name, age, date of birth and date of death at the beginning of an obituary. You will find that some families like to keep it brief, but feel free to go into more detail if you feel necessary to do so.
A common wonder is whether to add the cause of death to an obituary, and we recommend not to, unless you have the full support to do so from ALL friends and family. The cause of death could be something that people want to remain private, and they are more entitled to feel that way. Be cautious when going into detail and make sure that everybody is on board with how the announcement is structured.
A short bio
A short bio is a really fitting addition to an obituary and gives the reader a short and snappy insight to the kind of person the deceased was. You can include personal achievements, hobbies and the things they loved in life.
Make sure you add lots of rich information that will represent your loved one’s personality and what they stood for, perfectly. This can be a really comforting and memorable part of an obituary for so many that cared for your loved one, so be thoughtful and make sure you take your time on writing this part.
Adding the people that meant the most to the deceased is the next mark to go onto in your obituary. If they had a huge family, feel free to summarise, however if they had some very close family members, share a bit more detail.
You can summarise their role in their family by simply adding something like ‘loving wife, auntie, daughter, cousin…” etc.
An obituary allows you to extend an invitation easily when it comes to the funeral arrangements. An essential addition to your obituary is the date, time of service and location of the funeral. Any other specifics like dress codes can be added to, and will offer an opportunity to give information of the funeral widespread with ease.
A picture can say a thousand words, and using photos that best represent your loved one is imperative for a great obituary. Photographs help to enhance the memory of someone who has passed away and can be a comforting addition to the obituary.
You can use a simple headshot, or you could get more creative and add photos that represent who your loved one was and what they lived for. This heart warming area of your obituary will provide great comfort to those that knew the deceased well, and a better insight to the life of your loved one if they’re not as close.