What’s the protocol for belated notifications of death?

It can happen. You pay for a death notice in the newspaper, but some friends and loved ones live out of town. Maybe you couldn’t find the deceased’s address book and old friends weren’t notified of the death. Or, while reeling from the death of your loved one, no one called a second cousin. So what do you do when you realize, months or even a year later, some folks still don’t know your loved one died?

You can do one of two things; you can get in touch with them or, you can wait until they get in touch with you. Should you choose to make a personal notification, you can do so by phone, letter, or e-mail. Make your choice by what’s most comfortable for you.



If you decide to make a phone call, plan ahead as to what you’ll say. You might choose something like: “Hello Sarah. This is Michelle Thomas. I’m sorry to share such sad news, but my mother died a few months back. I apologize for the belated call but it took some time to find her address book so I’m late in my notifications.” Take a breath and allow them to respond. You can chat for awhile, if that’s what you’d like, or cut the call short. Do whatever feels appropriate for you.


Should you choose to write, either by mail or e-mail, compose your message first. You might write something like:

Dear Will,

I wanted to let you know that my mother died a few months ago. It was rather sudden and took us by surprise. It’s taken me some time to find her address book and I just realized you were not notified of her death. I apologize for that.

My mom was so fond of you and often talked about the warm camaraderie of the teaching staff. I know she enjoyed working with you at the high school and was happy you kept in touch over the years.

My best regards,

Maggie Jones


 

Robbie Miller Kaplan is an author who writes from a unique perspective as a mother who has lost two children. She has written How to Say It When You Don't Know What to Say, a guide to help readers communicate effectively when those they care about experience loss, now available in three individual volumes: "Illness & Death," "Suicide" and "Miscarriage." Additional titles are available as e-books: "Death of a Child," "Death of a Stillborn or Newborn Baby," "Pet Loss," "Caregiver Responsibilities," "Divorce" and "Job Loss." All titles are in Amazon's Kindle StoreClick here to order.

 

Views: 7471

Comment

You need to be a member of LegacyConnect to add comments!

Join LegacyConnect

Latest Conversations

Profile IconTrisha, Shirley Ann Casey, wally benson and 2 more joined LegacyConnect
Monday
gilbert a diaz posted a status
"ive had dreams few time with Danny in it and it felt so great to see him again...i know he is doing okay without me & 3 pets! We misses you!"
Jul 29
David R. Williams left a comment for gilbert a diaz
Jul 27
Kevin Dadouses and gilbert a diaz are now friends
Jul 26

Community Guidelines

Please be respectful of others. For more information, read our Community Guidelines.

Follow Legacy

© 2020   Created by Legacy.com.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service