What to Put in An Obituary
- March 19, 2021
Losing a loved one is an emotionally challenging experience. In the midst of your grief and coordinating funeral arrangements and services, you may also be creating an obituary for the deceased. Beyond being a crucial record of your loved one’s important personal information, an obituary creates a lasting legacy of their life and life story, as well as presents crucial pieces of knowledge for surviving family members and future generations.
In a recent article, we discussed the importance of creating an obituary, exploring its profound meaning as a means of remembering the decedent and the lasting value it offers their family, and community members. In this post, we will cover the kind of information an obituary includes. If you are in the process of writing an obituary for your loved one, you may be wondering what exactly it entails and what information it includes, so we have compiled a guide to help you navigate the process.
1. Includes An Announcement of Death
The obituary begins with a clear and concise statement of the decedent’s passing with their age they were then they passed, and the day of their death. This statement may also include basic information in regards to the decedent’s family relationships.
For example, the sentence may look like:
On Friday, September 12, 2018, Jane Doe, loving wife and mother of three children, passed away at the age of 77.
2. Includes Basic Biographical Information
As it is important to include information that will be of value to surviving family members and future generations, obituaries typically include essential general information pertaining to the decedent such as their birth date, information about how they were raised, education, marriage information, work experience, highlights and special accomplishments.
3. Captures Their Special and Unique Life Story
Remember, beyond covering basic significant information pertaining to a decedent, ther obituary is a celebration of their legacy and life story and a lasting representation of that person’s essence. So, use the obituary to paint a picture that captures the spirit of your loved one beyond basic information. Take time to reflect on the special elements and personality characteristics that were unique to your loved one, as well as their hobbies and passions, and defining and memorable experiences in the story of their life.
4. Overview of Family Information
Obituaries typically cover information about the decedent’s family members including those who passed away before them as well as surviving family members. Such a list may include the names of their parents, siblings, children as well as their spouse or partner and the number of grandchildren they leave behind rather than their names. It will also include the names of close relatives such as aunts and uncles and step-family members. While you can ultimately decide who would like to list with their full name, normally you may list immediate or close family members by their name and more distant relatives in a more general manner.
5. Funeral Details and Information
The last part of an obituary offers information in regards to the decedent’s funeral, providing family, friends and loved ones of the decedent with the necessary details that they will need to pay their respects to the deceased. Such information will include details about the funeral home where services will be held with the name and address, possibly the website address and phone number, as well as where burial and other memorial services will be held. In this section you may also include information in regards to donations, charities for memorial funds, flowers as well as condolences.