Latest trend in obituaries


For more than 250 years, newspapers have published obituaries to announce the deaths of the famous and the familiar. We have My Valley Tributes on TV and death notices online at sites such as or postings on social media.
The first obituaries were published in ancient Rome around 59 B.C.
But the modern obituary realty began in the mid 19th century when local funeral homes sent notices to the papers.
You can read all about it at the National Museum of Funeral History in Houston, Texas.
You know the format: death announcement, short biography, then a “survived by” section and funeral information, each like a miniature family tree.
Now we’re seeing a new trend: tell the truth in an obit.
Here’s one from the Toronto Star: Mary Stocks died at age 94 from carrying her oxygen tank up the long flight of stairs to her bedroom. Her heart give out.
Her son wrote she left behind a lot of stuff and her children have no idea what to do with it.
One man’s obituary said cremation will take place at the family’s convenience, and his ashes will be kept around as long as they match the décor.
One mom and daughter shared a love of the movie The Wizard of Oz. When her mom died, the daughter wrote Ding, Dong, the Witch is dead!
Mom was buried in ruby slippers, of course.
And when one New Jersey man died, this appeared in his obit: “There will be no viewing since his wife refuses to honor his request to have him standing in the corner of the room with a glass of Jack Daniels in his hand so that he would appear natural to visitors.”
And Scott Entsminger of Mansfield, Ohio died July 4, 2013.
His obit asked family and friends to all wear Cleveland Browns clothing to the funeral, and this: Scott “respectfully requests six Cleveland Browns pall bearers so that the Browns can let him down one last time.”

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