Tuesday, March 6, 2018

THERE ARE OBITUARIES AND THEN THERE ARE OBITUARIES!

      Last week I was looking for my niece's obituary on line. I found her obituary but I also found a site with a collection of the last year of obituaries. Since it was my old home town, which I left 61 years ago, I was surprised to see that in about 25% of the obituaries I either knew the people or knew who they were.

     I found one obituary rather amusing. Most of the items in the obituary tended to end up at his favorite pass  time which was drinking beer. No matter what he did he tended to end up at the local hotel where he had his favorite beer , Pilsener! Now this obituary sounded like a few of the old boys got together over a few beers and wrote the obituary. It was somewhat humorous and probably quite accurate.

    Now my niece's obituary was very accurate. She was talented artistically and in many ways a very fine person. My niece was a super Mom and wife. She liked fishing and driving farm machinery...the bigger the better. The person who wrote the obituary expressed very well the excellent characteristics of my niece.  I'm sure it was a female who wrote the obituary.

     And then I've read some obituaries and I wonder if they are writing about the same person I know.  Many fine qualities are listed of which I was not aware . The person was a great father. , a wonderful husband, and hard worker! Where did they get these things. Who wrote them?

     Writing an obituary is a challenge. The occasion is stressful. Consideration has to be given as to who the audience will be. What does the family want the obituary to say?

    Now there are many more types of obituaries. Some of them can become very humorous and interesting. Others sincerely and accurately catch the mood of the occasion. And some obituaries are just plane awful. 

    The first obituary was humorous. My niece's obituary was very accurate. 

     So after all this it is my intention to write my own obituary if I ever get my act together in time!

34 comments:

  1. You ought to! That would be fun!
    My fave: a client of hubby's. He learned to horse ride at 80!
    "Life's journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well-preserved body but rather to skid in sideways totally worn out, shouting...holy moley! What a ride!"

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    1. I've heard that one before and it's a good one.

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  2. P.S. I'm so sorry for the loss of your niece.

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    1. It was a long sad story for her ...M.S.

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  3. My aunt was married to an abusive man who eventually left her (and that was a good thing) At her funeral there was something said about how men were not kind to her and I felt sorry for my Dad, husband and cousin who were all kind to her. In an attempt to be minimise the wrong of one man, they insulted all those who did good. It taught me to try to be accurate about language.

    I like that your niece was a great Mom and enjoyed heavy machinery. She sounds gutsy

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    1. We must consider our audience when ever we write.

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  4. I saw one the other day that said the man enjoyed tasting beer. I laughed knowing his hobby to be a daily grind at the pub. Maybe should have said guzzling. LOL

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  5. Yes, condolences for your niece.
    I wonder how many famous people had a hand in their own obituary.

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    1. Thanks. Now come to think of it, obituaries don't name the writer or writers?

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  6. I love reading obituaries. It's always so interesting to see what people have done with their lives.

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    1. I like the biography in the obituary.

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  7. I have always enjoyed reading obituaries, thinking about what ends up in a few words about one's life. I think you should write your own, Red, and share it! :-)

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    1. The site I found had many people that I once new so it was like catching up on the news.

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  8. I'm sorry for the loss of your niece. Obituaries can indeed be difficult to write. And some of them are very accurate!

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    1. Thanks.I wonder what would happen to obituaries if an author name was required.

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  9. These are never going to be truly negative- I can imagine someday that my former brother-in-law's obituary will be glowing, even though the man himself is a bigoted, bitter, reprehensible excuse for a person.

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    1. I guess you'd have to be pretty mean to say a bunch of nasty things.

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  10. My dad used to read the obits in the local paper and always mentioned someone he knew. Some obits offer some fine reading about people who had very interesting lives. Every Sunday, a paper I used to read, always had a whole page devoted to one person. I always enjoyed reading it.

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    1. That would be a very special obituary.

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  11. I have always disliked the excess of obits that go on and on. When I wrote my dad's obituary, it was the facts, just the facts. And that's how I want mine to be. But everybody's different, and I guess that's what makes the world go around :)

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    1. Just the facts man! But make it interesting!

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  12. A lot of people write their own obits, I think. I plan to write mine, if I am still in my right mind.

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    1. I think some people mean well, like me , but life catches up to them and things don't get done.

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  13. Let me help you with your obituary sir...hopefully it won't be required for many years...keeping it nice and simple..."Red is Dead"!

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    1. Thank you. I don't know it this is a good opening or a good closing or if this is complete. I get your point.

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  14. Yes you need to write yours. I need to re write mine a bit and print it out...it is on my computer. Thanks for the reminder:)

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  15. I didn't realize your niece's death was recent, Red. Sorry I didn't pick up on that, and I'm sorry for your loss.

    And actually, this post is making me re-think my stand on obituaries. My reasoning all along was that future family genealogy sleuths would need just accurate facts. But now I'm thinking they would certainly be interested in more than that. After all, it's their own kin in those write-ups. I'm not sure why I didn't think of that sooner!

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  16. I lost my eldest son to the effects of bi-polar at age 27. It was one of the hardest things I've ever done.

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  17. I am sorry for your loss. I hope to write my own obituary simply because I had to help write my mother's and it was the hardest thing I have ever had to write. So much simpler if I just write it myself.

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  18. i am sorry for you niece Red!

    death is very interesting and appealing thing to me .
    i find it is pulling me towards it smoothly but writing about myself is not problem .
    just one line .
    Good bye friends ,hope not to see you soon:)

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  19. I'm so sorry for your loss, Red. Your niece sounds like she was a very wonderful, accomplished young woman. Most of the obits here are short, listing the family and where the services will be held.

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  20. Hi Red, Years and years ago, when my dad was still alive, I recall him getting up early in the morning, going out and getting the newspaper, and bringing it in to read with his coffee. He told me the first thing he checked were the obituaries. Wanted to see if any of his friends passed away.

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