How to Write an Obituary for a Teenage Son

By Tricia Goss
Writing your child's obituary can help you express the pain of your loss as well as the joy of being his parent.
Writing your child's obituary can help you express the pain of your loss as well as the joy of being his parent.

Whether unexpected or following a long illness, losing a child is devastating. Although your teenage son's obituary is the most difficult thing you have ever had to write, you want to be the one to do so. You know better than anyone how special, lovable and truly amazing he was, and you desire to impart this in a few short paragraphs. It may seem overwhelming — maybe even impossible. But following a few easy steps and enhancing the obituary with precious details will help you honor your teenage son's memory and share his story.

Announce His Passing

State your son's name and any nickname he went by, explaining that he is gone using the phrase most comforting to you such as "... was called home" or "... awakened to eternal life." Provide details including his date of birth, where he was born and to whom. If he is survived by his stepparents, list their names in parenthesis after each biological parent's name such as, "... born to Jim (Jean) Smith and Mary (Bill) Doe." Complete this paragraph with the date of your son's passing as well as cause of death, if you are comfortable doing so.

Celebrate His Life

In addition to the parents and possibly stepparents, list any other immediate family your son left behind. For example, include siblings followed by grandparents. Some obituaries might also include the name of a long-term girlfriend, close friends, a special teacher or a cherished pet. If he was a student when he passed away, provide the name of his school and his grade as well as clubs or organizations to which he belonged. Feel free to write about you teenage son's passions, talents and personality traits that made him so wonderfully unique, such as "He held a black belt in karate" or "He loved to volunteer with Habitat for Humanity." Include a phrase he was known to spout, his favorite Bible verse or a line from a song he loved, if desired.

Ask Others to Remember Him

Provide information regarding any services you are holding so that family and friends can join you to honor your teenage son's memory. Direct them to any online guestbooks or memorial websites you have set up and offer details if you wish to request memorial donations to a charity or organization.

About the Author

Tricia Goss' credits include Fitness Plus, Good News Tucson and Layover Magazine. She is certified in Microsoft application and served as the newsletter editor for OfficeUsers.org. She has also contributed to The Dollar Stretcher, Life Tips and Childcare Magazine.