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Sayings for Sample Letters of Sympathy and Condolences

Here you can select from a variety of sayings from our sample letters of sympathy and condolences that you can use in your own personal letter.

The Salutation

The Salutation sets the tone for a condolence letter. The most popular forms it takes are listed below. After you select your greeting, you can choose condolence phrases from subsequent sections to build a complete letter.

  • Dear _______,
  • Dear Mr. _______,
  • Dear Mrs. _______,
  • Dear Mr. and Mrs. _______,
  • Dear Aunt _______,
  • Dear Uncle _______,
  • Dear Aunt _______ and Uncle _______,
  • Dear Cousin _______,
  • My Dear Friend _______,
  • Dear Rabbi _______,
  • Dear Father _______,
  • Dear Pastor _______,
  • Dear Reverend _______,
  • Dear Reverend and Mrs. _______,
  • My Dear Friends _______ and _______,
  • Dearest _______,
  • Dearest _______ and _______,
  • Dear _______ and Family

Selected Opening Phrases Fro Our Sample Letters of Sympathy and Condolences

It is important to convey compassion at the start of your letter. Some traditional ways to do so are:

  • I am so sorry to hear about the loss of _____________. He/she was a fantastic individual who will be greatly missed everyone who knew him/her.
  • We just heard the sad news of ______’s passing, and want you to know that our thoughts and prayers are with you.
  • I am very sad to hear of ______’s sudden death.
  • It was painful to learn of _____'s death. I would like to extend my deepest sympathies to you and your family at this time.
  • I was devastated to hear the news of _______’s death. Please know that my thoughts and prayers are with you.
  • Please accept my sincere and heartfelt condolences at this most difficult of times and please pass these feelings onto your family.
  • I was absolutely saddened to hear of your uncle _______’s passing. He was a great guy and I’ll always remember the many times he made us all laugh.
  • I just heard of your husband’s sudden death. I am so very sorry, and am praying for you and your children at this time.
  • We are all shocked to hear of the sudden death of your nephew. Please accept our deepest and heartfelt condolences. 
  • I would like to express my sincerest condolences on the passing of your loving partner ________.
  • Thank you for calling to tell me the sad news about ________. I really liked him/her and my thoughts and prayers are with you and the children.

Special Thoughts

Next add a special thought about the deceased such as:

  • There is a great emptiness left by _____________’s passing, but I am certain that the strength of the love that you and your family share for each other and for _____________ will get you through this difficult time. May that love honor their memory and may you cherish the time you had together.
  • I especially remember _____________’s gentle spirit and loving nature. They will always be remembered as an especially giving person of great character.
  • I often recall when we first moved into the neighborhood. _____________ came right over and helped us carry our things into our new house. After he/she brought us over a home cooked meal. That was a wonderful act of kindness which we’ll never forget, and which demonstrates the type of person that _____________ was.
  • May the outpouring of love you have received since _____________’s parting serve as a reminder to you and your family of how much she/he was loved by all who knew him/her.
  • I'm sorry I never got to meet _________. Everyone says she/he was a loving and caring person. Though you may have been kept apart physically by the miles between you, the emotional bond and love between you was as strong as if you were living in the same city.
  • _______ was a valuable and highly respected member of our team here at (name of company or business). The effects of his/her loss are being felt already by those of us who had the honor and pleasure of working with him/her.
  • I’m so sorry I could not be there in person to convey my condolences. Though I may be far away, know that my spirit and prayers are with you. I will give you a call next week to talk.
  • As you requested, I’ve made a donation to the Cancer Society in ________’s name.
  • I will miss ________ so much. He/she was a dear friend whose company I cherished.

It is Appropriate to Offer Help to the Bereaved

In our sample letters of sympathy and condolences we offer help to the bereaved such as:

  • I have included a box of those cookies you enjoy so much; I baked them fresh for you.
  • I’ll be doing my weekly grocery shopping on Wednesday so I’ll pick up a few things for you and the kids and make a couple of casseroles that you can just throw in the oven or microwave to warm up.
  • If you’d like, I’ll take your kids to soccer practice on Tuesday then after they can come with us for burgers. It might do them some good to spend a bit of time with someone their own age.
  • I’ll accompany you later to the funeral home in case you’d like some help making the arrangements.
  • I’ve recently learned how to build websites and would like to make one dedicated to­­­_______. I'm off every Friday so maybe we can get together and talk about what we can put on the site; maybe go through some old photos to put online.
  • I hope we can get together for a chat soon. I’ll give you a call next week and maybe we could go for a coffee or something.
  • I’d love to sing at the funeral if that’s okay with you. Would you be able to put me in touch with whoever is making the arrangements?
  • I will be honored to be a pallbearer. ________ was always there for me; to carry him/her to his/her final resting place is the least I can do.

Sometimes We Use Quotes by Famous individuals in Our Sample Letters of Sympathy and Condolences

  • "Death is not extinguishing the light; it is putting out the lamp because dawn has come.” - Rabindranath Tagore
  • “While we are mourning the loss of our friend, others are rejoicing to meet him behind the veil.” - John Taylor
  • "Oh heart, if one should say to you that the soul perishes like the body, answer that the flower withers, but the seed remains." - Kahlil Gibran
  • Life is eternal, and love is immortal, and death is only a horizon; and a horizon is nothing save the limit of our sight.- Rossiter Worthington Raymond
  • "As you comprehend this profound loss, let yourself cry knowing each tear is a note of love rising to the heavens." - Author Unknown
  • "He spoke well who said that graves are the footprints of angels." - Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
  • “Though nothing can bring back the hour of splendor in the grass, of glory in the flower, we will grieve not; rather find strength in what remains behind. - William Wordsworth

Bible Verses Make Excellent Condolence Phrases

Some of our sample letters of sympathy and condolences use biblical verses and religious sayings to deliver words of condolence. Some are:

  • Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. - Mathew 5:4
  • The LORD is a shelter for the oppressed, a refuge in times of trouble. – Psalm 9:9
  • Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. - Matthew 11:28
  • You light a lamp for me. The Lord, my God, lights up my darkness. - Psalm 18:28
  • Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you. - Peter 5:7 
  • Good people pass away; the godly often die before their time. But no one seems to care or wonder why. No one seems to understand that God is protecting them from the evil to come. For those who follow godly paths will rest in peace when they die. Isaiah 57:1-2
  • The LORD is close to the brokenhearted; he rescues those whose spirits are crushed. – Psalm 34:18
  • Carry each other's burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.- Galatians 6:2 
  • Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you. – 1 Peter 5:7 
  • Your promise revives me; it comforts me in all my troubles. - Psalm 119:50

These are Sample Letters of Sympathy and Condolences for Social Media

Some short condolence phrases you can use for texts, emails, tweets, and Facebook are:

  • There are no words to express my sorrow for your loss.
  • You are in my thoughts and prayers.
  • Don’t forget how much we love and care about you.
  • Please know that I am thinking of you and the rest of your family at this time
  • My heart is heavy as I think of your Mom/Dad and the blessing she/he was to me.
  • May the love of your family comfort you in the days ahead.
  • Praying that the Lord will give you strength during this difficult time.
  • Please accept my deepest sympathies for your loss; my prayers are with you and your children during this difficult time.
  • My sincere condolences. May you find comfort and the strength to cope
  • Our condolences to you at this sad time.
  • Closing Thoughts From Our Sample Letters of Sympathy and Condolences

    The closing of your letter is as important as any other part. Some special words of sympathy to close with are:

    • With deepest sympathy,
    • My/Our sincerest condolences,
    • May God bless and comfort you and your family,
    • Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family,
    • Thinking of you during this time and always,
    • _____’s memory will be forever in our hearts,
    • With all my love and condolences,
    • With love and sympathy,

    Don’t make these common spelling mistakes if substituting your own words for the phrases from our sample letters of sympathy and condolences:

    • Sympaty
    • Simapthy
    • Simpathy
    • Simpathie
    • Sympothy
    • Simpothy
    • Simpothie
    • Condolenses
    • Condulescense