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Obituary Template

The obituary documents the deceased person's life, and informs the public of death and gives information about planned funeral and memorial arrangement. 

Use this free obituary template to construct an obituary for publication in a newspaper (death announcement).

"NAME", "AGE", of  "PLACE OF RESIDENCE",  died (can also say "passed away", went to heaven, etc.), "DATE" (can include optional cause of death).

"HE/SHE" was born "PLACE", "DATE OF BIRTH". "NAME" graduated from "SCHOOL" and received "DEGREE" from "SCHOOL". "HE/SHE" was married to "SPOUSE'S NAME" ( wedding date is optional).

INCLUDE OPTIONAL BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION HERE: Employment history, accomplishments, organizations, activities, etc.

"HE/SHE" was survived by "CHILDREN", "GRANDCHILDREN", ETC. (Try to separate each name with a comma or semicolon)

Funeral arrangements will be held "TIME", "DATE" and "PLACE".

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For more details see our articles on "Newspaper Obituaries", "Sample Obituaries", "How to Write an Obituary" and Funeral Announcements

For longer, more detailed obituary, use this free obituary template:

There are several parts to an obituary.  The first four items below are often found in the same paragraph.  The second paragraph begins with survivors.  The final paragraph is the service arrangements.

1.     The first part is the "dateline".  This is usually the city/county of residence.  It is simply a heading at the top of the page.
2.     This is followed by who the individual is (name, age, residence, and place of birth). 
3.     The next section is who the person really is and what they may have accomplished. (Occupation, memberships, military service, etc.  - This is the area that can readily be personalized by hobbies, favorite activities, and so forth). 
4.     Usually the names of the parents and deceased family members are listed next.  Often the surviving spouse is listed at this time also.  Again this area can be personalized by indicating a particularly long or happy childhood or marriage. 
5.     The next paragraph is where the survivors are listed.  Many times the names of the surviving children's' spouses are included in the obituary.  If the deceased is a child or young, do not forget the paternal and maternal grandparents & great grandparents. 
6.     The final section is the service arrangements section.  This is the who, what, where, and when of the services.  Wording similar to the following is often used:

"A memorial service will be held in the First Baptist Church, Hampton, VA on Monday, January 3, 2000, by the Rev. Bill Jones.  Interment will follow in the Hampton National Cemetery.  The family suggest that memorials may be made to the American Cancer Society or the charity of one's choice. 

If there will not be any services or should the arrangements be incomplete, these items should still be addressed in the obituary.  This is particularly true if no services are planned.  By giving this information, it helps eliminate people  calling and asking when the funeral will be.  Sometimes this simple phone call will trigger a flood of emotions and lengthy explanations of why no services are planned can be avoided.

Be sure to incorporate your obituary into an Obituary Program (Funeral Program), to hand out to friends and family.  This will serve as a keepsake to remember your loved ones by.

Create an Obituary Program...It's Easy

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  • Professional Designs formatted using Microsoft Word or Publisher or MAC Pages
  • All wording can be changed, including the program title
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