Offer Sympathy For the Death of a Business Associate's Family Member — Letter-Writing Tutorial


A letter offering sympathy for the death of a business associate's family member respectfully acknowledges the reader's misfortune while offering comfort and support. Be brief, honest, and sincere as you write the message by hand using personal stationery.


1. Express your sympathy briefly.


  • Our entire office was shocked and saddened to hear of your son's tragic skiing accident.
  • I was informed this morning about the loss of your mother. Please accept my deepest sympathies.
  • John called this morning to let me know that your father passed away last night. Although his passing was forthcoming, I know the finality of it is still difficult.
  • No words can ease our sorrow at John's passing.
  • John, our group was so sorry to hear of the boating accident and Jane's death.
  • Please accept our deepest sympathy at Jane's passing.


  • accept our sincerest condolences
  • although expected, it is still
  • deeply grieved this morning to learn
  • express my deepest sympathy
  • extend our heartfelt sympathy
  • extend my deep sympathy to
  • extend our deepest sympathy to you on the
  • has shaken us terribly
  • informed this morning about
  • let you know we are thinking about you
  • my heart goes out to you
  • never any way to prepare for the loss of a parent
  • on the passing of your
  • shocked and saddened us
  • shocked to hear of the death of your
  • so sorry to hear of the accident
  • such a cruel blow to
  • the tragic accident
  • the entire office was shocked and saddened to hear of
  • there are no adequate words to ease
  • this sad occasion
  • to you and your family
  • was stunned yesterday to hear
  • was saddened to hear of
  • was so sorry to hear that
  • were grieved to hear of your loss
  • your sad loss

2. If you were acquainted with the deceased, recall his or her achievements or character; otherwise, write something generally complimentary.


  • Although there is little we can do to ease your grief, we express our deepest sympathy. Eric was an honorable son.
  • Although I didn't know her personally, she must have been a wonderful woman to have produced such a wonderful son.
  • It's never easy to lose a loved one who had such a profound effect upon one's life.
  • John and I have shared many wonderful experiences with you and Eric over the years, memories we cherish now more than ever before.
  • I remember meeting your wife at several company gatherings and always thinking what a warm, intelligent person she was. She must have been a great source of inspiration and support for you.
  • I can only imagine what a great loss this must be for you and your three children. Jane was a kind and caring person.


  • although I didn't know her personally
  • can only imagine what a great loss this must be for you
  • certainly produced a wonderful daughter
  • earned the respect of everyone
  • feel as if I knew him from the things you have said
  • feel fortunate to have known him
  • had the greatest respect for
  • held in high regard by all who knew him
  • am sure you must have been very proud of
  • made friends with everyone he met
  • much admired for her loyalty and personal integrity
  • must have been a wonderful person
  • must have been a source of inspiration and support to you
  • never easy to lose a loved one
  • remember him as a warm, intelligent person
  • remember meeting your
  • shared so many wonderful experiences with you and
  • so little we can do or say to ease your grief at this time
  • such a profound effect on your life
  • the community is richer for having known
  • was a fine human being
  • was held in very high esteem by all who knew
  • what a unique person he must have been
  • will sorely miss
  • will all remember her for her

3. Offer further condolences or support.


  • We hope that the happy memories you shared with Jane will help you in the difficult days ahead.
  • If there is anything I can do to ease your burden, please don't hesitate to call.
  • Please accept my sincere condolences for your loss. If you need some time to sort things out, I will be glad to cover for you.
  • We hope you can draw strength from our continuing friendship at this difficult time.
  • I have asked Eric Johnson to take over all unfinished projects on your desk so that you can focus on meeting the needs of your family.
  • I will be happy to notify other colleagues and clients, if you desire. Just say the word.


  • accept our sympathy and condolences
  • admired your dedicated care
  • anything we can do to help
  • be glad to cover for you so that you can take some time off
  • be assured of my availability
  • best wishes and thoughts are with you
  • call on us if we can be of service
  • concern of your many friends will sustain you
  • don't worry about work at this time
  • everyone wanted to contribute
  • extend our deepest sympathy
  • extremely painful time for you
  • flowers are just a small symbol of our
  • help each other through times of crisis
  • help sustain you in the difficult days ahead
  • hope the many happy memories will bring comfort to you
  • hope you may draw strength from
  • hope the support of your family and friends
  • hope the many memories you shared will ease your pain
  • if there is anything I can do to help
  • if you would like to get away for a few days
  • know the loss must be overwhelming
  • may a lifetime of wonderful memories give you strength
  • may you have the strength and courage to carry on
  • may God bless you and your family
  • only a phone call away
  • our thoughts are with you
  • please let us know
  • please do not hesitate to call on us
  • realize how deeply this loss will affect you
  • share your relief that she is now at peace
  • thoughts and prayers are with you
  • time to focus on the needs of your family

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