The death of a loved one is never easy. Often, receiving flower arrangements and sympathy cards helps comfort the survivors by allowing them to see how many people the deceased person has touched. Many cards sent with flower arrangements include brief messages. If you knew the deceased or have a strong bond to his loved ones, a longer message may be appropriate.
When sending flowers, you may include a short note card instead of a standard greeting card. These cards can include one or two sentences expressing your affection for the deceased or your sympathy for the family. If you did not know the deceased and are sending flowers in support of the survivors, include a general message of sympathy such as "With deepest sympathy," "Our thoughts and prayers are with you" or "Please accept my condolences."
If you had a bond with the deceased, you may wish to include a longer message. Consider sharing a favourite memory, writing a quick story of a meaningful or humorous moment you shared. Alternatively, write about the qualities that come to mind -- such as wit, kindness or dedication -- when you think of the deceased.
You can include a sympathy quote on a small or large card. Choose a quote from a favourite writer, song or proverb that deals with grief. If the deceased and his loved ones believed in an afterlife, you might opt for a quote that deals with life after death. For example, Emily Dickinson wrote, "Unable are the loved to die/For love is immortality."
Whatever message you choose, use sincere words. Simple phrases such as "I'm so sorry for your loss" or "She will be missed" feel genuine and may bring a little comfort as a result. If you experienced shock upon learning of the departed's death, feel free to say, "I was shocked and saddened to hear the tragic news." Grief is normal, so affirm that sentiment in your words.
Avoid statements that make a judgment or try to minimise the sadness. You may mean to encourage the deceased's loved ones with phrases such as "I know how you feel" or "Time heals all wounds," but these sentiments may actually seem to undermine their grief, thus increasing their pain.