Condolence letter is often written to provide comfort to someone who has undergone a tragic experience/death. This can include a gamut of tragic experiences ranging from loss of property, a severe accident to the loss of a loved one. It’s a very grave issue and must be treated with utmost care.
Most of the times such letters are written to give respect to the person who has died and to give comfort to the newly bereaved family. Even in less severe cases such as damage to property or an injury, the sender should offer all the comfort he/she can along with providing sincere concern and care. These letters often become very important to the bereaved person and are re-read by them many times. Therefore, such letters should be written in a personalized manner. You can cite instances and memories you share with the concerned person, and in case of a tragic event you should let the person know that they have your full support.
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General Condolence Letter Writing Tips
- Personalize the letter: Condolence letter sounds more comforting when it is hand written, so always hand write your condolence letters. Send emails only if you feel the bereaved person would prefer emails.
- Keep it short and simple: Condolence letter sounds the best when it is kept short and sweet. As a bereaved person would not be wanting to read a letter which is long and out of the context of the tragedy. Few simple words of comfort will do the magic which a long letter will fail to do.
- The big NO-NO: Never try to tell the bereaved person that you know how he/she feels about the loss, as you had faced the same tragedy. Your feelings might differ compared to his/hers, so don’t presume someone’s thought and give them your advice on how to overcome the tragic experience.
- Acknowledge the loss: In a condolence letter, it is very important to acknowledge the loss of the bereaved person. A condolence letter sounds meaningless if you don’t acknowledge the loss.
- Offer to help them: Before ending the letter, offer help to help the bereaved person and his family as they might need some support in their time of trouble. If you know the family very well then try to be specific on how would you like to help them.
General Condolence Letter Template
Use our free General Condolence Letter to help you get started. If you need additional help or more examples check out some of the sample letters below.
SUBJECT: General condolence letter
Many blessings to you and your family at this difficult time. Please accept my heartfelt sympathies on the loss of your ________ (relationship of the deceased with the bereaved). Everyone in the office is shocked and saddened to hear that ______ (name of the deceased) is no more with us.
_________ (name of the deceased) was a very generous soul. I remember the time he brought us all souvenirs from his trip to Jaipur. He was a very kind and caring person who always prioritized other’s needs over his own. _____ (his/her) presence will be missed a lot by all of us.
I know this situation might be very challenging for you. I would like you to know that I will be there for you in whatever ways I can. Please let me know how can I help you in these difficult days.
May ______ soul rest in peace.
Jack B. Hillier,
4966 Joel Street
4966 Nancy Street
Fuquay Varina, NC 27526
I am extremely saddened to hear about your wife’s death. I know Sarah was a great woman and a very good home maker. I can’t imagine how difficult this time must be for you and your family. Where ever she went she always use to spread joy and happiness.
I still remember her enthusiasm for making occasions very special. Remember the time she forced us all to wear red on Christmas eve to celebrate the occasion? I still cherish all her memories.
If you’d like, then I would like to cook meals for your family in this time of trouble. If you want me to help you in any other way then please let me know.
Take care of yourself and know that you will always remain in my prayers and thoughts.
Jack B. Hillier
If you wish to give your condolences via email, then follow this format.
Subject: Condolence Letter
I heard about the sad news of death of your son. Loss of child is not a small thing and I am not getting any words to express my grief about this. I remember the day when I met your child for the first time. I got really impressed by his smile and way of talking. I am not able to believe that he has left us in such a young age. I will always remember him in my thoughts.
My best wishes and blessings are always with you and you are always free to call me for help at any moment.
Jack B. Hillier