Writing an obituary for someone who has passed away is a difficult and emotional task. Using a template for writing obituary will help make the process easier and will ensure you write a properly structured obituary.
To start, you will need to collect the information for the obituary. Interview family and friends and gather information on the deceased’s childhood, education, career, hobbies, interests and family. You may also need to speak to the funeral home for information on the date, time and location of the funeral service and other funeral related events.
Next, read through the information you collected and sort it into sections and remove any unimportant information. Then, using the template below, use the facts you collected to replace the fields in red with the appropriate information. Also included below is a sample obituary, which will provide you with additional help and show you what a completed obituary looks like.
TEMPLATE FOR WRITING OBITUARY
INSTRUCTIONS: Replace all of the items in RED below with the appropriate information.
[GIVEN NAME] [MIDDLE NAME (AND NICKNAME)] [SURNAME NAME], [AGE], of [CITY], [STATE], passed away on [DATE OF DEATH] in [LOCATION OF DEATH].
Funeral service will be held at [LOCATION] on [DATE] at [TIME] with Reverend [NAME] of [CHURCH] officiating. Burial will follow at [CEMETERY NAME], [CEMETERY LOCATION]. Visitation will be held at [LOCATION] on [DATE] at [TIME]. [NAME OF FUNERAL HOME] will be handling the funeral arrangements.
[NAME] was born in [LOCATION OF BIRTH] to [PARENT’S NAMES] on [DATE OF BIRTH]. He/she went to high school at [SCHOOL NAME] and graduated in [YEAR]. He/she went on to earn a degree/certificate in [DEGREE TYPE] from [SCHOOL NAME]. He/she worked as a [JOB TYPE] for [COMPANY] for [NUMBER OF YEARS]. He/she enjoyed [ACTIVITIES/HOBBIES]. He/she received [AWARDS/HONORS] and was involved in [CHARITIES/ORGANIZATIONS].
[NAME] is survived by his/her [RELATION], [NAME] of [CITY]. (List all survivors: spouse, children, siblings, parents, grandchildren, nieces and nephews). He/she is preceded in death by his/her [RELATION], [NAME]. (List predeceased: spouse, parents, children and siblings.)
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to [ORGANIZATION NAME], [MAILING ADDRESS]. The family wishes to extend their gratitude to [ORGANIZATION/NAME]. [FINAL WORDS].
AMY HARRIS, 62
Amy Elizabeth Harris, 62, of Seattle, Washington, passed away on May 6, 2012 in her home.
Funeral service will be held at Jones and Smith Funeral Home on May 8, 2012 at 11:00am with Reverend Frank Collins of St. David’s United Church officiating. Burial will follow at Mountain View Cemetery, 1222 West 15th Street, Seattle, Washington. Visitation will be held at St. David’s United Church on May 7, 2012 at 7:00 pm. Jones and Smith Funeral Home will be handling the funeral arrangements.
Amy was born in Everett, Washington to Harry and Mary Beth Friesen on January 10, 1950. She went to high school at Everett Secondary School and graduated in 1967. She went on to earn a degree in teaching from the University of Washington. She worked as a high school teacher for Seattle Secondary School for 20+ years. She was involved with the Helping Hands Charity and volunteered one day a week at their soup kitchen.
Amy is survived by her husband Charlie of Seattle, her mother Mary Beth of Everett, her brother Martin (Julie) Friesen of Arlington, her daughter Alexis of Seattle, and her numerous loving nieces, nephews and other relatives. Amy is predeceased in death by her father Harry and her brother Mark (Jennifer) Friesen.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Helping Hands of Seattle, 432 East 11th Avenue, Seattle, Washington 00000. The family wishes to extend their gratitude to the Seattle Hospice and Palliative Care Center. Amy will remain in our hearts forever.
Now that you have used the template for writing obituary above, you should have a correctly written obituary for your loved one. If you need additional help writing the obituary, we recommend that you read our other articles on obituary writing.
Updated: May 9, 2012