How to Write Funeral Tributes

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When a loved one dies, planning for the memorial service or funeral soon begins. You may feel lost, not knowing how to express your feelings for your dear friend or family member. Writing a tribute can help you do that. It can be a challenging undertaking, and you may not know where to start. But once you clear your thoughts and concentrate on your relationship, writing can be the emotional release you have needed and the tribute your loved one deserves.

Spend time alone to think about the person who has died and what he contributed to your life. Recall when you met, the circumstances of your meeting, what you talked about, how you enjoyed his company. Relive the moments in your mind as you try to capture the essence of the person about whom you will write.

Jot down the key moments you shared. Any funny, touching or important events that help others understand the person better will work well in your tribute. You do not have to fully elaborate these moments yet; just list a few special times you remember.

Begin writing your tribute by mentioning your relationship with the deceased and how you met. Elaborate on your first impression. Did he make you laugh? Did he make you angry? Discuss the moment with as much clarity as possible.

Write your first draft. Describe the times you had with the person, including any poignant anecdotes symbolizing his nature and personality. If he showed you kindness and generosity, write about those moments. If he made you laugh, write about those moments, as well. Be as detailed as possible. Let the words flow through you, and don't worry about grammar mistakes in this first draft.

Edit and revise any bad grammar or unimportant pieces of information. This tribute is meant to capture your feelings about the person who has died, so do not edit your feelings out of the piece. Remove only information that is too personal to share with others.

Gerri Blanc began her professional writing career in 2007 and has collaborated in the research and writing of the book "The Fairy Shrimp Chronicles," published in 2009. Blanc holds a Bachelor of Arts in literature and culture from the University of California, Merced.