Funeral Speech Examples: Saying Goodbye With Love

Funeral speech examples

A funeral speech or eulogy remembers a loved one by reminding other mourners of their good qualities and their impact on the lives of all in attendance. The content of a eulogy should be positive and uplifting as the speaker offers a final goodbye.

Although most of us will never be professionals at public speaking, many of us will someday have to speak to a relatively large group of people as we deliver a eulogy for a loved one. Knowing how to put together a touching eulogy speech that accurately encompasses the deceased’s life is an art form anyone can accomplish by following a few easy steps.

What Should You Say At A Funeral When You Give The Eulogy?

When giving a funeral eulogy, one can approach it in many ways. Most eulogies happen at the funeral home, at a memorial service, during a church service, or at a celebration of life. The circumstance and location of the eulogy will sometimes help shape the type of speech you will give.

Microphone for funeral speech

What Are Some Tips For Giving A Good Funeral Speech?

Preparing the eulogy involves gathering memories, writing them down, and practicing, especially if you feel you might become emotional.

There are seven steps to writing a good eulogy, or tribute speech to the deceased.

  • Speak to friends and family members of the deceased. Even though you are a close family friend, many others who knew the deceased well might have stories and insights to contribute. Meet people for coffee or make some phone calls so you can gather stories to help you prepare your eulogy.
  • Choose a theme and tone. Ask yourself what type of stories would best and most accurately depict your best friend and loved one. A funny eulogy would be perfect if they were the kind of person who always had people laughing. However, a more reserved memorial might be more appropriate for some people. The most important thing is that you speak from the heart.
  • Consider the audience and location. If you are invited to give a eulogy as part of a church funeral service, the tone may be very different than if you are speaking at a celebration of life at a local bar.
  • Introduce yourself as you speak. This will help everyone there to know why you are speaking by defining your relationship with the deceased and the family. Someone who has been lifelong friends with someone can speak to many aspects of their life, for example.
  • Give some information about the deceased. Stories and memories can get the point across. Just be certain not to say anything that might be hurtful or embarrass the family. The eulogy is not the place for dirty laundry.
  • Connect all of the information. Whether you are speaking in a theme or just bringing the stories full circle to explain what kind of person the deceased was, this is important to helping to wrap things up.
  • Conclude the speech. You may end your eulogy simply by stating that you are honored to have been given the opportunity to speak or by adding a funeral quote about loss or grief.

What Words Can You Use In A Funeral Speech?

  • Anecdotes from the person’s life are always fun because all of our lives are comprised of a million little things that have happened to us. These help paint a picture of who we are.
  • Excerpts from books are often included as a means of making a particular point.
  • Favorite memories should be shared as long as others assembled will find them relatable. Avoid stories that are too personal or where others will feel alienated when listening.
  • Funny stories are excellent, especially if the deceased had an exceptional sense of humor.
  • Poems are a beautiful way to remember a lost loved one, and they uniquely offer comfort.
  • Quotes or song lyrics are a beautiful way to either start or end a eulogy. Another lovely idea is to end with a quote from a song and then have the music played. It allows for a touching transition.
Funeral speech - use Scripture or petic quotes

What Are Some Good Topics To Talk About At A Funeral?

Reminiscing with the audience about the deceased can start out in many ways. Sometimes people start with the first time they met someone. Of course, there are many firsts in a person’s life. It could be the first time close friends went fishing together, and it ended in a tipped boat. Telling funny stories can help people cope during difficult times.

If you use the deceased person’s nickname, explain where it came from or why it stuck.

For someone loved by all, it may be appropriate to start the eulogy with “dear friends.” After all, what better way to pull in everyone listening than to acknowledge that the deceased was a friend to all?

Choosing memories or stories from when the deceased was a little girl or boy, to high school stories, to college to adulthood is an excellent way to provide a chronological life timeline. Some eulogy templates follow this method.

Other sample eulogies follow the three-story process. In this one, the person giving the eulogy chooses three stories that can be connected in some way to help illustrate a life well lived.

Memories for funeral speech

Short Eulogy Examples

Sometimes a short and sweet eulogy is best because you worry about keeping your composure when speaking. Also, many people give short stories or memories at some celebration of life events. Whatever the reason you are leaning toward a short eulogy speech, you can say a lot in very few words.

For a Friend: “Starting on that first day of high school when I could not get my locker open, and Amanda helped me, making us both late for class, I knew I had a friend for life. As I spoke to people about Amanda, I heard over and over that she gave often and selflessly. She will be terribly missed, and the world is a darker place without her.”

For an Older Brother: “My brother was my first best friend, and I simply can’t imagine life without him in it. He was my protector and my confidant. My fishing buddy and my personal cheerleader. He pushed me to be the best version of myself, and I am struggling to imagine a life without him in it. I love you, Matt.”

Funeral speech - memories of brother

For a Co-Worker: “Having worked with Art for over 20 years, I can attest, he was a staunch perfectionist who helped us all to be better in the workplace and in life. Art led by example, worked hard to lead our team and also reminded us of the importance of keeping work and home life balance. Art was the best boss I have ever had, and although eventually, someone will have to sit at his desk, no one will ever take his place.”

What Are Some Examples Of Funeral Speeches?

When seeking eulogy examples, why not read (or watch) what are arguably five of the best eulogies ever?

Pam Berg

A former English teacher and currently an elementary principal in a rural school, Pam has honed her speaking skills in the classroom and before professional groups. Pam enjoys sharing her insights about public speaking almost as much as she enjoys running, which she does daily.

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