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How to write a memorable eulogy and pay tribute to a life lived

Eulogy in Australia

At eziFunerals, we consider it a tremendous honour to be entrusted with the responsibility of sharing a lifetime’s worth of cherished memories and experiences through a heartfelt 10-minute eulogy. Crafting a eulogy is an incredibly personal endeavour, as it involves paying tribute to a beloved individual and celebrating their life. Typically delivered by a close friend or family member, a eulogy serves as a remembrance speech, offering solace and comfort to those gathered at the funeral or memorial service.

A well-crafted eulogy goes beyond mere words. It has the power to beautifully encapsulate the profound impact that the departed soul has had on their family and community. It is a heartfelt opportunity to share their unique qualities, recount their inspiring acts, and reflect on the positive changes they brought to the world around them.

But how does one do justice to a life’s worth of memories and emotions in a single speech? It may seem like an overwhelming task, but fear not. We are here to guide you through the process, step by step, ensuring that your eulogy is a fitting tribute to your loved one. Our comprehensive eulogy writing guide offers valuable insights into the ideal length of a eulogy, effective research techniques to gather meaningful information, essential elements to include in your speech, and expert tips on editing and refining your words. We want to assist you in crafting a special eulogy that not only honours the life and legacy of your loved one but also provides solace and comfort to all those who hear it.

Allow us, at eziFunerals, to support you during this emotional journey. We understand the importance of humanising the memories of those who have touched our lives profoundly, and we are here to help you create a eulogy that captures the essence of your loved one’s spirit and leaves a lasting impact on everyone present.


What is a Eulogy?

A eulogy is a speech of remembrance typically given at a funeral or memorial service to pay tribute to someone who has died.

Writing a successful eulogy can be challenging but also enriching, providing a moment to reflect meaningfully on the life and legacy of a beloved family member, friend, or colleague. Drawing on stories and memories, accomplishments, lessons learned, or favourite quotes, the eulogy is an expression of why this person was important and how they’ll be remembered now that they’re gone.

Writing and delivering a eulogy, like writing an obituary, can be challenging. You’ve just lost someone, a dear friend or family member — now you must quickly gather your thoughts, write a speech, and deliver it to a roomful of people. For those not accustomed to writing and giving speeches, there is the additional difficulty of performing a task that is unfamiliar. Or perhaps you are used to giving speeches but didn’t know the deceased well and aren’t sure what to say. 

Keep your audience in mind: most eulogies will be delivered to people of all ages and backgrounds. Any stories, jokes, songs, quotes should be appropriate for a diverse, family audience.

Remember that a eulogy is a tribute, an expression of love, not a “fair and balanced” accounting of a life. A eulogy should highlight a person’s positive qualities — not focus on the negative or try to set the record straight. 

How Long Is a Eulogy? 

A eulogy is usually around 10 minutes long. As you write your eulogy, aim for about 750-1500 written words (or 1-2 typed pages, single-spaced) — this should be about 5-10 minutes when spoken. Plan to spend at least an hour or two writing and editing the eulogy, plus time to practice speaking. Also set aside additional time for reaching out to family or friends to collect anecdotes or other details to include in the eulogy, as well as gathering your own thoughts. 

What to Include in a Eulogy? 

A eulogy can include anecdotes, accomplishments, favorite quotes — any details that help paint a picture of the personality of the deceased. The eulogy you write might include:

  • A brief recounting of their life story 
  • Insights into their relationships with family and close friends (“He was the best dad a kid could have” “She and her granddaughter were thick as thieves”) 
  • Career milestones and accomplishments (“She was the first in her family to graduate from college” “He was proud of his work with homeless vets”) 
  • Achievements related to personal goals, interests, or hobbies (“She was determined not just to run a marathon but to win” “He spent countless hours on his boat, sailing with his trusty first mate — his grandson”) 
  • Your favourite memories (“I remember the road trip to Geelong with my grandparents — my grandmother was the navigator which meant she spent most of the drive yelling, ‘You’re going the wrong way!’”) 
  • Favourite quotes, poems, songs, proverbs and/or religious writings 
  • Their own words — a catchphrase or mantra, perhaps, or a poem or song they wrote


How to Write a Eulogy?

One of the simplest ways to write a eulogy is to review other examples that match your own preferred tone and style. What makes a eulogy unique is the unique details you’ll share about the person themselves, which is why it’s essential to customise your eulogy to honour and celebrate the personality of your loved one.

You may want to start with our sample outline on how to write a eulogy. Then, use the following outline and eulogy examples to create a strong speech that communicates the message you want to share about the person who meant so much to you.

Eulogy Sample Outline

Using a eulogy sample outline is a proven way to create a great speech. These eulogy samples help you overcome writer’s block and keep you focused on the details that matter most. Aim to cap the eulogy at a maximum of 10 minutes total. The simplest eulogy outline can be broken down into three parts, so you’ll need to consider how much time to spend on each section:

First Section – Introduction

  • In the opening section, you need to cover a few basic pieces of information before moving onto the main section of the eulogy.
  • Set the tone by beginning with a poem, quote, or scripture that was meaningful to the person.
  • Names they were known by, including nicknames and maiden names.
  • Cause of death (an optional detail).
  • A brief insight into your relationship with the individual.

Middle Section – Main Part of the Eulogy

Now that the introduction is over, you can move onto the most important part of the eulogy. This section will be the longest part of the eulogy. Many people choose to highlight a person’s life chronologically, or they choose a theme for the stories. The main part of the speech can include a variety of talking points:

  • Accomplishments
  • Major life events
  • Stories or fond memories
  • How the person affected others
  • Childhood years
  • Travel adventures
  • Marriage and children
  • Any other thoughts you want to share about the person

End Section – A Summary the Person’s Life

The end is typically the shortest section of the eulogy. This is a quick wrap-up that sums up a person’s life. Finish the eulogy with a few of these options:

  • A final take away from your theme
  • How you want family and friends to remember the individual
  • What the person would want you to remember them for
  • Quote, scripture, or song lyric
  • Thank attendees for participating


Funeral Eulogy Examples

As you read through the following eulogy examples, the most important thing to remember is that there isn’t a right or wrong way to write a eulogy. Instead, consider the best way to share the person in the way they would want others to remember them. It’s your chance to verbalise your love and honor the memories of your loved one.

Eulogy for a Friend

It can be helpful to write this eulogy as if you were talking to a friend. Common talking points might include:

  • Common activities enjoyed together
  • What you like most about the person
  • Personality traits or phrases they often use
  • How you would describe the person
  • What will you remember them by?

Here is a eulogy example for a friend:

I can’t imagine how empty it will feel to spend time on the basketball court without Max by my side. Our relationship was built with a basketball in hand, and evolved to share many family gatherings and other activities together over the years. With his passing, Max is leaving behind a legacy of kindness, compassion, and generosity.

Max shared good humour and a big smile with everyone he met. Even though people often cursed at his practical jokes, he was an integral part of creating a solid foundation of friendship in our group. When times were difficult, he could always put a smile on my face. He held his head high until the end, showing what it looks like to finish strong.

Eulogy for a Father

Writing a eulogy for your dad may be really tough. How do you memorialise your hero amid grief and emotion? We hope these tips and the example below will help you in your process. 

  • Share childhood experiences when spending time with dad
  • Talk about his best qualities
  • Capture his essence through “dad jokes” and the things that made you laugh
  • Tell about the things you will miss most about him
  • Describe his role in your upbringing

Here is a eulogy example for your father:

My dad was my hero. He could make every person feel like they were the most important person in the world. Growing up, I knew that I could always ask Dad for help – and he would be willing to drop anything to lend a hand. He was a rock of stability in my childhood and a source of strength for our whole family.

My father was a man who made fun into the most mundane tasks. I remember how he would turn our bedtime routine into an adventure that included highlights from our favourite storybooks. He was a kind and thoughtful person. Every night at the dinner table, he encouraged us to talk about the things we were grateful for, and always had yummy treats for us kids hidden in the back of the pantry. I will miss you, Dad, and I’ll always hold onto the amazing memories we shared together.

Eulogy for a Mother

How can you ever do justice to a eulogy for your beloved mother – the woman who was always there with love and guidance through the ups and downs, the celebrations and challenging moments of your life? Here are a few tips for writing a eulogy for your mother:

  • Describe the way she showed her love for you
  • Celebrate the small ways she turned your house into a home
  • Highlight the impact she made throughout the community
  • Explain the smells, sounds, and feelings you felt when arriving home
  • Share stories from childhood and adulthood that reflect her character

Here is a eulogy example for your mother:

Today we are honouring, celebrating, and remembering [mum’s full name]. She was a woman of grace and courage, with a stubborn streak that showed up when she set her mind to something, like going back to school to become a nurse at age 40. 

My mother was truly my best friend and I am humbled by the challenge of describing the fullness of her beauty and caring here today. I don’t know how she did it, but Mum always found the perfect balance between work and home. Even though she worked 40 – 50 hours a week to support us, she prioritised family dinner. That time was sacred to our family. Her love and kindness were infused in everything she did, whether she was baking cakes for special occasions or supporting us with sporting events year after year. 

She had a magical way of bringing joy every time she walked into the room. No one who met her could forget her smile. And I’ll never forget the advice and the lessons she taught me. Her wisdom will forever guide the decisions I make through the rest of my life. I love you, Mum.


Eulogy for a Grandmother

How do you share the details about the love you felt through your relationship with a grandmother? Follow these tips to write a good eulogy for this important woman:

  • Talk about the fun traditions she brought for your favourite holiday
  • What was she known for in the community?
  • How did her influence touch your life?
  • What are the daily moments that will remind you of her?
  • Share funny stories that showcase her quirks or sense of humor

Here is a eulogy example for your grandmother:

My grandmother paid attention to the details – it was the little things that added the finishing touch to every experience. Whether she was setting out the treat jar on the kitchen table or clinking the glass while drinking her iced tea, she always prioritised food and drinks.

Since she loved to shop, gran would often take us to the mall when we were visiting for the weekend. We would have fashion shows in the dressing rooms and often come home with bright, frilly dresses that were perfect for twirling.

When pop was away for the war, gran was an example of always getting back up again when things get hard. She never complained; just worked hard and supported her family at all times. Despite the personal challenges, she always looked outside of herself – which is why she will be remembered as a beacon of light in this community.

Eulogy for a Grandfather

What are the details that make your grandfather larger than life? Here are a few ideas to help when writing a eulogy for this great man:

  • Explain the qualities that best describe his personality
  • Tell about the details that made him stand out from other grandparents
  • What hobbies or passions did he share with the family?
  • How will the neighbourhood or community remember him?
  • Talk about stories that were life-changing moments for him

Here is a eulogy example for your grandfather:

Even though my grandfather didn’t like to be the center of attention, he had an undeniable impact on the community. If he was here with us today, he wouldn’t want us to share grief and sorrow. Instead, his desire would be to focus on the happy memories and joyful experiences shared over the years.

Pop was a man who set a lasting impression on everyone he met. His deep laugh and kind eyes warmed the room and brought life into the most boring daily activities. Pop loved spending time with his grandkids because he said that it made him feel young at heart.

He was a great teacher and a dependable friend. His advice and guidance will continue to carry me through the joys and challenges that life has to offer.

Eulogy for a Brother

Siblings share a special bond, giving you deep insights to share about your brother. Follow these tips for writing a good eulogy:

  • What was it like growing up in the same house together?
  • Describe the way your relationship changed in adulthood
  • Share funny stories about sibling rivalries
  • Explain the lasting impact he left on you and the family
  • List his favourite hobbies and food

Here is a eulogy example for your brother:

While it’s tragic to think about Braydon leaving us too soon, he left behind a lifetime of memories that we can celebrate. Braydon was always ready for a fun day with friends – he would have been the one showing up today with the perfect playlist for the event.

Even though my brother was a few years older than me, he always included me in the adventures with his friends. I never felt like the little brother he was dragging along. He made me feel special and included in the group, and helped me build confidence along the way.

Braydon was my best friend and I can’t imagine what life is going to be like without him sending me funny cat memes every night. But I know that his memory will live on when I eat his favorite pizza or hear his favourite band on the radio.


Eulogy for a Sister

If you’ve lost a sibling, we are truly sorry. Writing a eulogy for a sister can be a way to honour her through your memories of your childhood and growing up with her, as well as the milestones of her life. A few ideas for this eulogy include:

  • Share her notable life accomplishments
  • Retell your favourite stories from growing up together
  • Highlight the kind of person she was
  • Summarise your relationship in a few short words
  • Talk about what she meant to you and how she influenced your life

Here is a eulogy example for your sister:

My sister, Kathy, might have been a little shy at the first introduction. But once she warmed up to a friendship, she always had plenty to say every time she talked. Kathy loved to share stories from her time volunteering at the children’s hospital and she had a beautiful gift of making everyone feel like the most important person in the world.

We were only a year apart, which meant that I was the younger sister who was often stealing her clothes or listening in on her conversations with her boyfriend. Even though I was the pesky sibling who cracked jokes about her unique style, she was everything I wanted to be when I grew up. She was independent, strong, and beautiful. She was a free spirit who wasn’t afraid to act boldly, like moving to Canada after university and starting her own business. She was my partner in crime, and I could always tell her everything. She will never be replaced. My dear sister, I love you and I will be forever grateful for every moment we spent together.

Short Eulogy Examples

Short and sweet is a good rule of thumb to follow when writing a eulogy. Consider these important talking points if you want to write a short eulogy:

  • Highlight the person’s passions or interests
  • What were the most memorable times you spent together?
  • Sum up the person’s character using a story or memory
  • Express your gratitude for the impact the person had on your life
  • Talk about their influence on family and community

Here is a short eulogy example:

The years I spent with Sally in my life were filled with excitement and adventure. She showed up for life in the biggest way possible. From the moment she shared her cookie with me on the first day of kindergarten, I knew we would be best friends.

She spent many years working as a teacher, and her heart was big enough to offer individual attention to every child that walked into her classroom. Sally made a difference in the lives of hundreds of children over the years, and her kindness and positivity will leave an unwavering legacy in this community.

Funny Eulogy Examples

Sometimes a bit of humour is the perfect way to lighten the mood and showcase the personality of your loved one. Consider these tips if you want to add a few jokes into the eulogy:

  • Point out the person’s comedic qualities
  • Be specific about sharing their jokes or pranks
  • Look for ways to communicate what the person would say if they wrote the speech
  • Find the right balance of humour to share laughs without being irreverent
  • Share a funny poem or a quote from the person’s favourite movie

Here is a funny eulogy example:

Anyone who met Justin quickly learned that there are always laughs to be shared. It was impossible to spend time with him without enjoying a gut-busting laugh at some point in the conversation. Justin was known as the class clown, and his jokes were quick-witted and hilarious.

Who could forget the time Justin showed up to the family reunion wearing that ridiculous blow-up dinosaur costume? He chased the kids around the park until everyone laughed until they were crying.

Many funny memories came out of our family camping trips. He couldn’t sit down to enjoy a peaceful campfire. Instead, the marshmallow making always seemed to turn into a marshmallow fight – with white puffs flying through the air when you least expected it. Justin kept a smile on my face through the ups and downs of life, and I will keep on smiling in his honour.

Independent Funeral Directors



About eziFunerals

eziFunerals supports individuals and families cope with end of life decisions, death and funerals. We are an independent, Australian-owned and operated company. We are not part of any other funeral company.

Our member Funeral Directors operate in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, Adelaide and Australia wide. They are chosen for their knowledge, quality, service, personalisation and experience. They go above and beyond, and will take the time to support the family.

For more information or to make contact with a trusted Independent funeral director, call eziFunerals on 1300 236 402 or visit www.ezifunerals.com.au.