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Obituary Outline

A Template to Help You Write an Obituary

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Updated April 01, 2011

If you are writing an obituary for a loved one, I suggest reading How to Write an Obituary for some important tips. Come back and refer to this template once you are ready to write.

Obituary Outline

Name and Announcement of Death

  • Full name of the deceased, including nickname, middle name, maiden name if appropriate
  • Age at death
  • Where the deceased was living at the time of death (city)
  • Day and date of death
  • Place and cause of death if desired

Life of the Deceased

  • Date and place of birth
  • Names of parents
  • Pertinent Childhood Facts: siblings, stories, schools, friends (optional)
  • Marriage(s): date and location of marriage (optional) and name of spouse
  • Education: school, college, university and other
  • Achievements, awards, and other recognition
  • Employment
  • Places of residence
  • Hobbies, sports, interests, activities, and other enjoyment
  • Charitable, religious, fraternal, political, and other affiliations including any positions held
  • Personal stories about the deceased's special qualities if desired

Family

Survived by (and place of residence):

  • Spouse or significant other
  • Children (in order of date of birth, and their spouses)
  • Grandchildren (names or number of)
  • Great-grandchildren (names or number of)
  • Great-great-grandchildren (names or number of)
  • Parents
  • Grandparents
  • Siblings (in order of date of birth)
  • Others, such as nephews, nieces, cousins, in-laws (optional)

Predeceased by (and date of death):

  • Spouse
  • Children (in order of date of birth)
  • Grandchildren
  • Siblings (in order of date of birth)
  • Parents
  • Others, such as nephews, nieces, cousins, in-laws (optional)

Service Details

  • Day, date, time, place
  • Name of officiant, pallbearers, honorary pallbearers, other information
  • Visitation information if applicable: day, date, time, place
  • Reception information if applicable: day, date, time, place
  • Other memorial, vigil, or graveside services if applicable: day, date, time, place
  • Place of interment
  • Name of funeral home in charge of arrangements

Closing

  • Memorial funds set up and where to donate
  • Charitable organization suggestions for donations (hospice agencies, disease specific organizations, an organization the deceased was personally involved with)
  • Thank you to people, groups, or organizations

How to Write an Obituary

  1. About.com
  2. Health
  3. Death and Dying
  4. Funeral/Memorial Planning
  5. Write an Obituary - Outline to Help You Write an Obituary

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