What to Write on a Son's Headstone

Losing a son is an unnatural and heartbreaking occurrence. The emotional decision of what to write on his gravestone marker or memorial stone may be overwhelming, but the words or comments put forth can eventually become a source of joy and peace to all who visit.

Choosing an appropriate inscription for your loved one's final resting place will help to bring closure after a period of grief and allow his memory to live on for generations to come.

Personalising Your Words

Choose appropriate images or words that represent your son's passions and interests. A musical note or an open book may be suitable images. A cherub or other religious depiction could be a touching tribute. If he was an athlete, you may consider using an image of his preferred sport. Review his life and interests, as these memories will help you decide what to put on his gravestone marker.

Headstone Content

Choose a heading that will be used as the "introduction" to his memorial. The heading is found at the top of the headstone. Words and phrases may include "Special Memories," "Our Loving Son," "In Loving Memory" or "Now in God's Hands." Some people will use this space to refer to the afterlife, rather than the person's memory.

The main body of the memorial is the next to appear. It will consist of his name, nickname in quotes if desired, date of birth and date of death. In some gravestone designs, this area is presented in a different font, so that it stands apart from more personal prose.

Consider what was important to your son throughout his life. This will help you to choose a fitting footnote verse for the final section of the headstone. A verse from the Bible or a song lyric may express your feelings and pay tribute to your son's memory. Bereaved family members often choose a biblical verse as an epitaph as it may exhibit some virtuous quality that was characteristic of your son's life. This is where you may want to comment about his value as a son, father, husband or friend.

Remember that your inscription will be a lasting celebration of your son's time on earth. Trendy language may be appropriate for today, but in time could be seen as disrespectful. Choose instead words that convey love and respect for your son's life.