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Words of Condolence Letter for a Brother

You can read the sampler letter below of a condolence letter for a friend who has just lost a brother. The sibling bond is a unique relationship, and will mean something different for every individual. Writing a condolence letter is an important way for you to show your support to the family of the deceased. Once you have read the sample letter, you can review the following section-by-section guide.


I hope this letter finds you well and and that you are holding up after your recent loss. I didn't know your brother as well as I would have liked to, but from everything you've told me about him, he was a wonderful brother. It was obvious to all of us that he loved you and your family very much.

I remember that time at the 4th of July picnic at your house when you asked him to take a look at my car which had been giving me a variety of problems. I'm sure it's not how he wanted to spend a beautiful holiday afternoon, but he did it, and soon had the problem fixed. I will always be grateful to him for that act of kindness to someone he hardly knew.

I know that he helped you many times as well and how comforting it was to you to know that he was always ready and willing to come to your aid. You always told me how much that meant to you and how proud you were to have such a caring and loving brother. Of course, anyone could see that he felt the same about you.

I know that it is going to be hard to imagine life without him, but I pray that your faith and inner strength will help you through this difficult time. Hopefully his many acts of kindness will help you as well. Your brother lived a good life, although it was far too short, and he will be long remembered by everyone who knew him.

Please know that my thoughts and prayers are with you. If there is anything that I can do to help, please do not hesitate to ask.

In Friendship,


Before You Begin-Rules of Etiquette to Consider

  1. Keep your letter short but thoughtful.
  2. Feel free to mention one of your favorite memories of the deceased if you have one.
  3. Be respectful of religious beliefs. Always remember that everyone deserves sympathy, regardless of their beliefs.
  4. Sign with your full name (first and surname). Beyond simply being proper etiquette, using your full name will prevent confusion regarding relatives or friends with the same first name as you.
  5. Avoid making offers of financial help.
  6. Never mention money that the deceased may have owed to you or anyone else. Financial matters can be dealt with after the grieving period has passed.
  7. Do feel free to make offers of practical help such as offering to provide meals or lend a hand with household chores.

Begin With an Appropriate Greeting

Letters of sympathy and condolences are personal, and as such, the language of your greeting should reflect that. When addressing your intended recipient, your greeting should always include the name of the person you are writing your letter to. The specific nature of your relationship with the bereaved will help you to determine the exact phrasing that should be used. Here are some sample suggestions for your greeting:

Dear ________,
My Dear Friend _________,
Dearest __________,
Dear Mrs. __________,
Dear Ms. __________,
Dear Mr. __________,
Dear __________ Family,

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

It can be difficult to decide how to start your condolence letter for a brother. Remember that the most challenging part is choosing the first words of your condolence letter. Once you get started, it will only get easier to express your condolences. Your letter will genuinely reflect both your feelings of sympathy and the nature of your relationship with the bereaved, but only if you write from your heart.

In our letter we began with:

I hope this letter finds you well and and that you are holding up after your recent loss.

Other appropriate opening sentiments include:

We were very surprised to hear the sad news of your loss. Know that you and your family are in our thoughts and prayers.

I can never express with words how sorry I am to hear about the passing of (brother’s name). I will keep you and your family in my prayers during this difficult time.

We just heard about your loss. You have our deepest condolences.

I am sorry for your loss. May your beautiful memories sustain and bring comfort to you during this difficult season.

My heart is filled with sadness for your loss. Please accept my deepest condolences and know that my thoughts are with you during this time.

May your memories of your brother sustain and strengthen you as you navigate the difficult days ahead.

I want to extend to you my deepest condolences. My prayers and thoughts are with you during this time.

Mention a Wonderful Memory of the Deceased

Finding the right words to express your sorrow when writing words of condolence letters for a brother is a challenging task. Mentioning a fond memory of the deceased and calling them by name can provide a measure of comfort to the bereaved. As our sample letter demonstrates for you, a personal touch is of the utmost importance when crafting your letter. Here are some samples to give you ideas for your own letter:

  • Of everyone I know, _______ was the only one who could make an entire room roar with laughter within minutes of walking in. His natural confidence always won people over. Despite his success in life, he never took himself too seriously, and much of his humor was at his own expense. I like to think that he is still laughing with us now. May the memories of his spirit strengthen and surround you in this difficult time.
  • I first got to know ______ back in med school. As the guy in our class that was the most focused on his studies, most were surprised when he left the university to become a musician. I wasn’t, because I had often heard him playing, and knew just how talented he was. Even though I have never had the opportunity to meet you in person, he often spoke about his family and how encouraging they were to his dreams. He will be deeply missed by all who knew him.
  • I am shocked and saddened to hear of the devastating loss of your brother, _______ . While I only know him through your stories, I know that your bond as siblings was very close. Please take comfort that his life, though far too short, will always be remembered.
  • _______ was always there for me whenever I needed him, whenever I called on him. Even though we met at work, I considered him to be much more than a co-worker. As a friend, he helped me through one of the most difficult times in my life. I am grateful to have known him and send you my deepest condolences.
  • Most of my favorite childhood memories are from times spent with you and _______. Our secret treehouse club, the river rope swing, and the lemonade stand debacle are some of the best moments of my childhood. Your brother was one of the best men I have ever known. Please know you are in my prayers.

How To Offer Help in a Words of Condolences Letter for a Brother

Some appropriate ways to offer help include:

  • We will drop off several meals so that you won’t need to worry about doing any cooking. You can just keep them in the freezer and use them as you need them.
  • Our care team would like to help you out with your household chores for a time. I'll call you and we can plan for the team to come bi-weekly, during a time that would suit you.
  • I’m going shopping in town at ______on ______ . I can pick up whatever you need and just drop it off on my way home.
  • I'll call you in a couple of days to see if you would like to go for a walk at a time that suits you.

Close with an Appropriate Sentiment

We closed our sample letter with:

Please know that my thoughts and prayers are with you. If there is anything that I can do to help, please do not hesitate to ask.

The closing statement is perhaps one of the most important parts of any condolence letter. It is your last opportunity within the letter to offer your sympathies. Some other appropriate phrases to use in a words of condolence letter for a brother include the following:

  • With prayers for strength to face these challenging days.
  • With hope it helps you to know we are thinking of you.
  • With warm and heartfelt sympathy.
  • With all of our blessings, love and prayers.
  • Please know you are not alone.
  • Know that you are in our thoughts and prayers.
  • With our deepest and heartfelt condolences.
  • Please know I am here for you if you need me.

Don’t Make These Common Spelling Mistakes

You will want to avoid these common spelling mistakes when substituting any of your own words for those in our sample words of condolence letters for a brother. For your convenience, here are some of the most common spelling errors:

  • Condolense
  • Condolesens
  • Simpathy
  • Simpothy
  • Simpothie
  • Preyers
  • Blesing

Condolence Messages for a Brother

You can send a text, email, or social media condolence message instead of the more traditional letter. A digital message can still include all of the same kinds of sentiments as what would be found in a traditional letter. Of course, the format of a text or social media message will often limit you to a certain length of message. Fortunately, it is proper etiquette to make your message shorter when sending a condolence message for a brother via text or social media. Here are some sample ideas that you can use for your message:

I just heard about your loss. Please know that you are in my thoughts.

I am so sorry for your loss. You and your entire family are in my thoughts and prayers.

We just heard the sad news about ______. Please accept our warmest sympathies; you are in our prayers.

Words can’t express how sorry I am for your loss. You are in my prayers.

I’m sorry for your loss. May memories of your brother’s life comfort you and bring your peace in this difficult time.

We are so sorry to hear of the passing of dear ______. You have our condolences.

You can choose to send one of these short messages immediately to provide comfort and sympathy. Later, as you feel it is appropriate, you can then send a more traditional words of condolence letter for a brother.

Condolence Cards for a Brother

Sending flowers or another type of condolence gift to the family of the deceased is a good way to show them that you care. You will want to include a condolence card for a brother along with your flowers or gift. If you find yourself at a loss for what to write in the card, remember that a simple phrase offering condolences is often best. You can use any of the following words of sympathy:

  • May these flowers serve as a token of my sympathy for you.
  • May these flowers express what words never will.
  • May this gift serve as a reminder of my thoughts and prayers for you.
  • May these flowers remind you just how much we care.
  • With condolences for your loss.
  • Please know that we are always here for you.
  • With prayers and love for your entire family.
  • Please know that you are in our prayers.
  • From our family, with our condolences.

Words of Condolence Quotes

“A brother is a friend given by Nature.” Jean Baptiste Legouve

“They say love beyond the world cannot be separated by it. Death cannot kill what never dies.” William Penn

“I sought my soul, but my soul I could not see. I sought my God, but my God eluded me. I sought my brother and I found all three.” Unknown

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