An informative and respected website designed to offer
resources for obituaries, funerals and genealogy search

Words of Condolence to Write in a Letter for a Nephew

Below you can read an example letter of a condolence letter for a nephew. It can be difficult to know the right words to say with the loss of someone young, especially if they were healthy and the death was unexpected. That is why we have provided a section-by-section breakdown of how to compose words of condolence letters for nephews following the sample letter so you can craft your own personal message.

Dear Carol and/or Mike,

I was shocked to hear of the death of your nephew. From what I had heard, there were no indications that anything serious was going on except for a mild case of the flu. I can't even imagine how the family is feeling, but they must be in shock. It provides a timely reminder that regardless of age we never know if we will wake to see tomorrow.

I remember your nephew when he was just a teenager. He often came to visit during the summer for a week or two. It must have been quite a change in routine to have a young person back in the household even for a short period of time. I know you must have made a lot of plans for those visits. I'm so thankful that you got to spend that quality time with him and have those memories to cherish now. Please extend my sympathies to the rest of the family. I'll give you a call to see how you are doing next week.

With sincere sympathy,


Before You Begin - Rules of Etiquette to Consider

  1. Keep your letter short but thoughtful
  2. Try to mention a special memory of the deceased if you knew them
  3. Respect the family's religious beliefs. While their beliefs may be very different than your own, they still need the support and sympathy that their family and friends can provide.
  4. Sign with a full name (first and surname). This is good etiquette as there may be other relatives or friends with the same first name as you.
  5. Do not offer financial help
  6. Don’t mention money the deceased may have owed you. This can be dealt with after the grieving period has passed.
  7. Do offer to help in other ways such as offering to do chores for the surviving family members, or helping with meals.

Begin With an Appropriate Greeting

Letters of sympathy and condolences should be created specifically to the person you are writing to show your relationship with them. To do this, you should first mention the name of the person you are addressing. Depending on how close you are with the aunt or uncle some of the ways you can do that are:

Dear _______,
My Dear Friend _______,
Dearest _______,
Dear Mrs. _______,
Dear Mr. _______,
Dear _______ Family,
Dear Family _______,

* Condolence Letter Writing Tip: If you knew the deceased, but not the family, address the letter to the aunt or uncle or both. Also, if you did not know the deceased, address the card or letter to your friend, co-worker, or acquaintance.

What to Say First in Words of Condolence Letters for a Nephew

Choosing the right words for your own letter can be quite a difficult task. Always write from the heart so that your letter reflects your support and shows the depth of your concern for the family member.

In our letter we began with:

I was shocked to hear of the death of your nephew. From what I had heard, there were no indications that anything serious was going on except for a mild case of the flu. I can't even imagine how the family is feeling, but they must be in shock. It provides a timely reminder that regardless of age we never know if we will wake to see tomorrow.

Other appropriate opening words for such a letter are:

My sincerest condolences to you. So sorry to hear of the passing of _______. I will keep you in my prayers.

We are so sorry for your loss. You have our most heartfelt sympathy and are in our thoughts and prayers.

My deepest condolences on the loss of your beloved nephew. May your beautiful memories sustain and bring comfort during this unhappy season.

Please accept our deepest sympathies as you grieve your loss. Our prayers are with you during this time.

Mention a Wonderful Memory of the Deceased

When writing words of condolence letters for a nephew, it is appropriate to mention a special memory that you have of the deceased, especially if it involves the survivors, too. In fact, by mentioning these memories as we did in the example letter, it can help the family to better deal with the pain of losing their nephew. Here are some other ways to do so:

  • It's been a long time since I last saw _______. It's hard to imagine him a young man now. He was always so wild and full of life when he came to visit you. I'm sure that enthusiasm stayed with him into adulthood and made him into a wonderful person that everyone loved.
  • I was deeply saddened by the news of _______'s death. He was like a brother to me and I can't imagine not having him around. He spoke so highly of you and had such a wonderful relationship with you that I wanted to write to you and extend my condolences. I know you must be feeling his loss very much at this time.
  • I never knew your nephew but I remember how much you used to look forward to his visits. I think he spent every spare minute at your house, which is a testimony to how much he loved you. I hope those thoughts give you strength for the days ahead.

It is Appropriate to Offer Help in a Words of Condolences Letter for a Nephew

Some appropriate ways to offer help are:

  • I’ll prepare a bunch of meals that you can keep in the freezer. That way you can just thaw them out and heat them up as you need them.
  • On _____ I’m going into town. I’ll give you a call first to see if there is anything you need.
  • I’m going shopping sometime this week so I’ll pick up a few things for you and drop them by on the way home.
  • I have _____ and _____ off, so I’ll give you a call and see how you and the rest of the family are doing.
  • Don’t worry about your pets. My kids will come by before and after school to feed them. until you get back from the funeral.

Close with an Appropriate Sentiment

We closed our letter with:

With sincere sympathy,

An appropriate closing can also be difficult to write. This is your final chance to offer support to the family. These final words of sympathy end the letter in a comforting way. Other phrases you can use to end words of condolence letters for a nephew are:

  • I hope you know how much we care.
  • With warm and heartfelt sympathy.
  • With blessings, love and prayers.
  • May these flowers express what our words can never say.
  • Know that you are in our thoughts and prayers.
  • With our deepest and most sincere condolences for your loss.

Don’t Make These Common Spelling Mistakes

Makes sure you avoid these common spelling mistakes if you plan to use your own words for any in our sample words of condolence letters for a nephew.

  • Condolense
  • Condolesens
  • Simpathy
  • Simpathie
  • Preyers
  • Blesings
  • Simpothy
  • Simpothie

Condolence Messages for a Nephew

Thanks to technology, it can be easier and even more appropriate to send a text or email message rather than a letter of condolence for a nephew. In these messages, you can say something similar to what you would include in a letter. It is appropriate for it to be shorter, especially for a text or social media message. Here are some examples that you can use.

I just heard about ______'s death. Please know you and your family are in my thoughts.

I heard from ______ that you lost your nephew unexpectedly. I want to extend my sympathies to you and the family and let you know I'm thinking of you.

I just heard about the death of ______. I want to offer my sincere condolences. Please let me know if I can do anything such as caring for your pets while you attend the funeral.

You can send one of these messages to provide immediate comfort and then send a traditional letter at a later time if you feel it is appropriate.

Condolence Cards for a Nephew

If you are sending flowers or another gift to the aunt or uncle, you may wonder what to put on a card to express your sympathy. Here are a few ideas that you can use for your own condolence cards for someone's nephew:

  • May these flowers serve as an expression of my sympathy for you and your family.
  • Please know that we are thinking of you during this time.
  • May these flowers let you know that we care.
  • You are in our prayers during this time.
  • May God be with you in your sorrow.

Words of Condolence Quotes

"It is not length of life, but depth of life." – Ralph Waldo Emerson

"I know death has ten thousand several doors for men to take their exits." – John Webster

"Say not in grief he is no more – but live in thankfulness that he was." – Hebrew Proverb

"Death is the veil by which those who live call life: They sleep, and it is lifted." – Percy Blysshe Shelley

comments powered by Disqus