Crafting an obituary can be challenging, especially when losing a loved one. It’s crucial that you honor the departed, express the loss, and provide necessary information. Our blog post helps you write by example. Our “7 Simple Obituary Examples: Easily Pen A Tribute,” offers a range of examples that serve as starting points or inspiration for creating a heartfelt tribute.

Whether you’re seeking a traditional format, something more personal, or merely need guidance on what to include, these examples are designed to simplify the process and help you convey respect and love in your words.

Read on for practical tips and adaptable examples to help you write an obituary that truly reflects the life of your loved one.

Practical Tips For Writing Obituaries

Writing an obituary is a meaningful way to honor a loved one’s life, but it can also be a challenging task. 

To help you get started, here are some practical tips along with obituary examples and templates that can guide your writing:

Gather Information

Begin by collecting all the essential information about the deceased, including their full name, age at death, date of birth, and the names of surviving family members. Place of residency helps too.

Include significant details such as the person’s life achievements, community involvement, and the impact they had on those around them.

Choose the Right Format

Decide whether you need a short obituary or a more detailed essay. You may also want to include the obituary as part of the funeral program. A sample obituary template can make the process easier, ensuring all vital information is covered.

Program Title and Introduction

Start with a clear title for the obituary program and an introduction that briefly summarizes who the deceased was. An effective obituary outline can help you organize your thoughts and the flow of the obituary.

Personal Touch

Add a personal touch by sharing anecdotes or memories from close friends and other family members. This personal element can show a vivid picture of the deceased’s character and the void their passing has left in the community.

Typical Content to Include

Include a death notice within the obituary, detailing the circumstances of passing if appropriate, and any details about the funeral arrangements. Mention if the family prefers donations to flowers, indicating where donations can be sent.

Review and Edit

Once you have started writing the obituary, review it for accuracy and clarity. Make sure it reflects the loved one’s obituary in a respectful and loving manner. Ask another family member or a close friend to read through it to ensure it captures the essence of the deceased’s life.

Finalize Details

Ensure that the obituary format aligns with the publication standards if it is to be published in a newspaper or online. Check the deadline dates for submissions and any associated costs.

By following these tips and utilizing available obituary samples and templates, you can create a heartfelt tribute that honors the memory of your loved one, providing comfort to those who sadly lost a beautiful person in their lives.

Sample Obituary 1- Eleanor Mae Thompson

Eleanor Mae Thompson, 78, of Asheville, North Carolina, passed away peacefully at home surrounded by her loving family on April 20, 2024, following a courageous battle with heart disease.

Born on May 15, 1946, in Raleigh, NC, Eleanor was the daughter of the late Harold and Jane (Waters) Smith. She graduated from Broughton High School in 1964 and earned her degree in English Literature from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1968. Eleanor dedicated 30 years to teaching English, where she inspired thousands of students with her passion for literature and her unwavering support.

Eleanor married her college sweetheart, Robert Thompson, in 1970. Together, they raised two children and enjoyed a life full of adventure and love. Eleanor was an avid gardener, a talented quilter, and an active member of her community, often volunteering at the local library and serving on several community boards.

She is survived by her husband, Robert; her children, Laura Thompson Greene (David) of Charlotte, NC, and Michael Thompson (Susan) of Nashville, TN; her grandchildren, Emily, Daniel, and Sarah; her sister, Susan Riley (Mark) of Raleigh, NC; and many nieces, nephews, and dear friends.

Eleanor was preceded in death by her brother, James Smith.

A celebration of Eleanor’s life will be held at 2:00 PM on Saturday, April 27, at First Baptist Church in Raleigh. The family will receive friends from noon until the time of service at the church. Following the service, a graveside service will take place at Oakwood Cemetery, where Eleanor will be laid to rest. 

In lieu of flowers, they also request that donations be made to the Raleigh Community Library Fund.

Eleanor’s kind spirit, generosity, and compassion touched the lives of many. She will be deeply missed by her family, many friends, and all who knew her.

Sample Obituary 2- Thomas Edward Lee

Thomas Edward Lee, aged 72, passed away peacefully after a brief illness on April 20, 2024, in Raleigh, North Carolina. Born on March 5, 1952, in Greensboro, NC, to the late Harold and Margaret Lee, Thomas spent his entire life dedicated to his community and career.

Thomas was a private person, yet his contributions as a FedEx delivery man before his retirement were publicly recognized. Known for his punctuality and friendly demeanor, he delivered not just parcels but also cheer to his clients and co-workers alike. After retiring, he moved to Raleigh, embracing a quiet life enriched by the company of close friends and the community.

Thomas considered his colleagues and neighbors as his family members. His life, though not bound by blood to many, was rich with memories and deeply rooted relationships that shaped his legacy.

A simple obituary cannot fully encapsulate Thomas’ life, but it serves as a tribute to a man who was greatly loved and will be sorely missed. Thomas’s life story is a vivid picture of dedication and service, leaving others inspired by his personal kindness.

Funeral services will be held at the Renaissance Funeral Home in Raleigh, NC, on April 27, 2024, at 11:00 AM where the family also invites you to a visitation April 26, 2024 from 6 to 8pm. 

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the local Children’s Hospital, where Thomas volunteered, bringing joy and comfort to the children and families.

Thomas is survived by numerous friends, each a cherished family member in their own right. His legacy will continue to influence the community he loved so dearly.

He will be deeply missed by all who had the privilege of knowing him. He will forever be remembered for his simple, unassuming nature and his profound impact on the lives he touched.

Sample Obituary 3- Obituary for David Lin

David Lin, 72, of Charlotte, North Carolina, passed away peacefully on April 21, 2024, at his residence after an illness. Born in Taipei, Taiwan, with a birth date of June 3, 1952, to the late Chen and Lian Lin, David moved to the United States in 1974 to pursue higher education and later established his life in North Carolina.

David earned a master’s degree in Computer Science from Duke University and enjoyed a distinguished career as a software developer. He was instrumental in pioneering early digital banking software, impacting the industry significantly. David’s dedication to innovation and excellence earned him widespread respect among his peers.

In 1980, David married Sarah Kim, and together they raised three children, imbuing their home with love, cultural heritage, and intellectual curiosity. An avid photographer and chess enthusiast, David also spent much of his time volunteering at the local community center, teaching computer skills to the elderly.

He is survived by his beloved wife of 44 years, Sarah; his children, Michael Lin (Jessica), Patricia Chen (nee Lin) (Daniel), and Emma Lin; and his grandchildren, Lucy, Ethan, and Maya; as well as his siblings, Jenny Huang (nee Lin) (Wei) and Henry Lin (Ming).

David was a kind and thoughtful man, known for his gentle spirit and generous nature. He will be deeply missed by his family, friends, and all who knew him.

A memorial service to celebrate David’s life will be held at 10:00 AM on Thursday, April 28, at St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in Charlotte. The family will receive friends immediately following the service in the church hall. In lieu of flowers, contributions in David’s memory may be made to the Charlotte Asian Heritage Association.

David’s legacy of kindness, innovation, and community engagement will live on through the many lives he touched.

Sample Obituary 4- Marcus Elijah Johnson

Marcus Elijah Johnson, 68, of Greensboro, North Carolina, passed away on April 19, 2024, following a valiant battle with cancer. Born on January 12, 1956, in Durham, NC, he was the son of the late Albert and Grace Johnson.

Marcus graduated from North Carolina A&T State University with a degree in Civil Engineering and dedicated over 40 years to improving the infrastructure of his beloved state. His work on numerous key projects brought him not only professional accolades but also deep personal satisfaction, as he was committed to serving his community.

Beyond his professional life, Marcus was a cornerstone of the Zion Baptist Church choir, sharing his baritone voice and radiant spirit. He was an avid golfer and a mentor to many young students in engineering at his alma mater. His home was always open, filled with laughter, music, and his famous barbecue ribs.

He is survived by his wife of 45 years, Anita Johnson (nee Davis); their children, Brian Johnson (Tanya) and Nicole Johnson-Wells (Kevin); his grandchildren, Zoey, Marcus II, and Jason; and his sister, Linda Johnson-Carter (Thomas).

Marcus was preceded in death by his brother, Charles Johnson.

A funeral service will be held at 2:00 PM on Saturday, April 26, at Zion Baptist Church in Greensboro. The family will greet friends and loved ones from 12:00 PM until the time of service. The family also invites you to a visitation at the church from 7pm to 9pm April 25. 

Marcus’s family requests that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the North Carolina A&T College of Engineering, to support scholarships for aspiring engineers.

Marcus’s legacy of love, integrity, and generosity will endure through the many lives he touched. He will be deeply missed by all who knew him.

Sample Obituary 5- Obituary for Carlos Manuel Rivera

Carlos Manuel Rivera, 68, of Raleigh, North Carolina, passed away on April 22, 2024, after a valiant fight with cancer. He was surrounded by his loving family in the comfort of his own home.

Born on January 15, 1956, in Monterrey, Mexico, to José Rivera and Maria Elena Sánchez, Carlos moved to the United States with his family when he was ten years old. Settling in North Carolina, he quickly adapted to his new surroundings while preserving the rich traditions of his Mexican heritage.

Carlos began his career as a sales assistant at a local car dealership and, with his charismatic personality and a knack for sales, rapidly worked his way up. His dedication and hard work led him to eventually own the dealership, turning it into one of the most successful automotive businesses in Raleigh.

A devoted husband and father, Carlos is survived by his wife of 40 years, Rosa Rivera (née Morales), and their daughters, Sofia Turner (née Rivera) and Lucia Rivera; his son, Miguel Rivera; and his grandchildren, Isabella, Mateo, and Elena. He also leaves behind a sister, Adriana López (née Rivera).

Beyond his business achievements, Carlos was known for his generosity and community spirit. He sponsored numerous local sports teams and charitable events, helping to foster community spirit and support the youth.

A funeral service will be held at 2:00 PM on Saturday, April 28, at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Raleigh. The family will receive friends from noon until the time of the service at the church. A graveside service will be held after the funeral at Oakwood Cemetery in Raleigh.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the American Cancer Society in Carlos’s memory.

Carlos’s legacy of kindness, entrepreneurship, and commitment to his community will continue to inspire all who knew him.

Sample Obituary 6- Obituary for Susan Elaine Foster

Susan Elaine Foster, 58, of Raleigh, North Carolina, passed away unexpectedly at her home on April 19, 2024. Born on October 12, 1966, in Durham, NC, to William and Dorothy Harper, Susan was a spirited and determined individual who carved her own path in life.

Susan entered the workforce immediately after high school, quickly finding her niche in the warehousing industry. Over her 36-year career, she rose through the ranks to become the operations manager at one of Raleigh’s largest distribution centers. Her strategic vision and relentless work ethic not only propelled her career but also helped improve the efficiency and productivity of her facility.

After her divorce, Susan devoted much of her time to her passions and to her community. She was an avid reader, enjoyed gardening, and often volunteered at local food banks, applying her professional skills to help organize and distribute resources to those in need.

Susan is survived by her son, James Foster, of Atlanta, Georgia; her daughter, Emily Foster, of Asheville, North Carolina; her brother, Robert Harper, and his wife, Linda, of Raleigh, NC; and her beloved cat, Whiskers. She was preceded in death by her parents.

Remembered for her resilience, sharp wit, and generosity, Susan made a lasting impact on everyone she met. She will be deeply missed by her family, friends, and colleagues.

A memorial service will be held on Saturday, April 26, at 11:00 AM at the Community Chapel of Raleigh, where Susan was a regular attendee. The family will receive friends an hour prior to the service at the chapel. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Susan’s memory to the Raleigh Community Food Bank.

Susan’s legacy of leadership and compassion remains a beacon of inspiration to all who knew her.

Sample Obituary 7- Obituary for Maria Cristina Santos

Maria Cristina Santos, 74, of Raleigh, North Carolina, passed away peacefully on April 23, 2024, at WakeMed Hospital, following a brief illness. Born in Raleigh on July 10, 1950, to the late Eduardo and Theresa Santos, Maria was a proud lifelong resident of the city and a beacon of compassion in her community.

Maria dedicated over 50 years of her life to nursing, beginning her career at WakeMed Hospital immediately after graduating from nursing school. Known for her gentle touch and warm smile, she provided care and comfort to countless patients, earning the respect and love of both her colleagues and those she served. Maria specialized in pediatric care, where her kind demeanor and playful spirit made her especially popular among her young patients.

A devout Catholic, Maria was an active member of Sacred Heart Cathedral, where she volunteered in various capacities, including organizing health fairs and providing first aid during church events. Her faith and dedication to serving others were the cornerstones of her life.

Maria is survived by her three children, Joseph Santos (Mia) of Raleigh, NC, Anna Lee (née Santos) (David) of Charlotte, NC, and Sofia Santos of New York City, NY; her grandchildren, Olivia, Ethan, and Isabel; and her siblings, Antonio Santos (Carmen) and Lilia Reyes (née Santos) (Juan). Maria was preceded in death by her sister, Elena Cruz (née Santos).

Maria’s warmth and generosity extended beyond her loved ones and career. She was a mentor to many young nurses and a friend to all in her neighborhood. She will be deeply missed by all who had the fortune to know her.

A memorial service will be held at 10:00 AM on Saturday, April 30, at Sacred Heart Cathedral in Raleigh. The family will receive friends from 9:00 AM until the time of the service at the church. In lieu of flowers, donations in Maria’s memory may be made to the Pediatric Care Fund at WakeMed Hospital.

Maria’s legacy of kindness, dedication, and service will live on through the many lives she touched.

We Can Help

At Renaissance Funeral Home and Crematory, we understand that organizing a funeral or memorial service can be challenging during a time of loss. Our compassionate team is dedicated to providing support to surviving family members and friends with a range of services designed to celebrate the life of your loved one.

Planning a Funeral or Memorial Service

Our funeral services are tailored to reflect the personal anecdotes, cherished memories, and professional accomplishments of the individual who passed away. Whether you write a basic obituary, a religious obituary, or a more detailed tribute, our staff can help you create a meaningful funeral program.

We also ensure that your loved one’s story is told beautifully and respectfully.

In lieu of flowers, many families choose to request memorial donations to a cause that was important to the deceased. At Renaissance Funeral Home and Crematory, we handle these details with care, helping to direct donations and support the causes your family member valued.

From the initial planning stages to the final farewell, Renaissance Funeral Home and Crematory is here to support you and your family in honoring the life of your loved one, ensuring that their indelible mark on the community and their cherished relationships are celebrated and remembered by future generations.