47 Sympathy Quotes

The loss of a beloved mother, father, brother, sister, or close relative or friend is not easy to handle emotionally. Without a doubt, it is always devastating and sometimes debilitating. No matter who the person is that has died, the anguish and pain are real - it can be excruciating.

The bonds and connections felt between family members are unique; it has no comparisons in society. This bond is especially significant between parents and their children who each are a singular creation between two people.

Throughout the ages, each of us has probably reached out to many of our own family to seek guidance, to seek support, or to seek comfort during stressful or anguishing events or circumstances. It is these memories of support and comfort that are on our minds when such a giving family member dies.

Unfortunately, tragic losses often come unexpectedly like a storm over a mountain top. With this in mind, it’s obvious that no one is really prepared for such the loss of a beloved family member, that special friend, or that cherished colleague. The question at this time often becomes how to most appropriately express your deepest and genuine sympathy that the other person is presently experiencing.

In a situation such as this, it can be comforting to know that you can visit this site to find just the right words of condolence to ensure that your sympathetic message responds to the personal grief being experienced by another family member, an extended family member, friend, or a work colleague.

Near the bottom of the page, we have included:

1) "Tips For Writing a Sympathy Letter",

2) "After Everyone Has Left", an article expressing how the person in mourning may feel after everyone else has gone back to their normal routine, and they are left all alone with their grief; and,

3) "Condolence Words, Sample Letter".

  1. Remember that when you lose that special someone here on Earth, that Christian brother or sister, you also gain a forever companion in heaven.
    Rosy Lee Anderson

  2. There is no greater sorrow than to recall happiness in times of misery.

  3. As you ride the race of life, sooner than later you will meet the pain and sorrow of death. However, within this journey, you will also receive the comfort and solace that only God can provide.
    Byron R. Pulsifer

  4. Those we love and lose are always connected by heartstrings into infinity.
    Terri Guillemets

  5. What the caterpillar calls the end of the world, the master calls a butterfly.
    Richard Bach

  6. The fallen leaves of life always remind us of some aspects of beauty left behind.
    Byron R. Pulsifer

  7. Sometimes sorrow can be overcome by peaceful slumber, a quiet stroll through a pristine woods or the comfort of a gracious friend.
    Theodore W. Higgingsworth

  8. The world is full of suffering. It is also full of overcoming.
    Helen Keller

  9. Like a bird singing in the rain, let grateful memories survive in time of sorrow.
    Robert Louis Stevenson

  10. There are no goodbyes for us. Wherever you are, you will always be in my heart.

    Parallel quotes and sayings for reflection:
    Appreciation Quotes  | Best Freind Quotes  | Encouraging Bible Quotes  | Courage Quotes  | Deep Quotes About Life  | Difficult Times Quotes  | Discouragement Quotes  | Happiness Quotes   | About Helping Others

  11. Some souls leave indelible writings on our heart casting parts of them to live with us forever.
    H. H. Hopalotomus

  12. The heartfelt memory of a deceased loved one is a God-given treasure to hold dear.
    Byron R. Pulsifer

  13. Never underestimate the impact of a single soul on the mind of one who has been graced by their presence.
    Annabelle Marie Haines

  14. Sorrow is a fruit. God does not make it grow on limbs too weak to bear it.
    Victor Hugo

  15. The more sympathy you give, the less you need.
    Malcolm Forbes

  16. A human life is a story told by God.
    Hans Christian Andersen

  17. We must embrace pain and burn it as fuel for our journey.
    Kenji Miyazawa

  18. Despite the death of a loved one, they continue to be by our sides all through life.
    Freddy J. W. Parkes

  19. As a well spent day brings happy sleep, so a life well spent brings happy death.
    Leonardo Da Vinci

  20. Pain is certain, suffering is optional.

  21. What is lovely never dies, But passes into other loveliness.
    Thomas Bailey Aldrich

  22. Darkness may hide the trees and the flowers from the eyes but it cannot hide love from the soul.

  23. Flowers grow out of dark moments.
    Corita Kent

  24. Grief is the price we pay for love.
    Queen Elizabeth II

  25. It's sad when someone you know becomes someone you knew.
    Henry Rollins

  26. When sorrows come, they come not single spies, but in battalions.
    William Shakespeare

    Related quotations for further reflection:
    Inspirational Quotes About Life and Struggles  | Irish Blessing Quotes  | Best Of Life Is Too Short Quotes  | Life Journey Quotes  | Make A Difference Quotes  | Memories Quotes  | Never Give Up Quotes  | Overwhelmed Quotes  | Problem Quotes

  27. A sorrow's crown of sorrow is remembering happier times.
    Alfred Lord Tennyson

  28. It is not length of life, but depth of life.
    Ralph Waldo Emerson

  29. Tears are God’s gift to us. Our holy water. They heal us as they flow.
    Rita Schiano

  30. For some moments in life there are no words.
    David Seltzer

  31. The day which we fear as our last is but the birthday of eternity.
    Lucius Annaeus Seneca

  32. The purpose of human life is to serve, and to show compassion and the will to help others.
    Albert Schweitzer

  33. Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass; it’s about learning to dance in the rain.
    Author Unknown

  34. The light has gone out of my life.
    Theodore Roosevelt

  35. To live in hearts we leave behind is not to die.
    Thomas Campbell

  36. Sorrow is so easy to express and yet so hard to tell.
    Joni Mitchell

    Related poems to review:
    Heaven Poems
    Poems About Life
    Christian Poems
    Encouraging Poems

  37. Happiness is beneficial for the body, but it is grief that develops the powers of the mind.
    Marcel Proust

  38. The love of God rests upon those bereaved. Let Him in to comfort you.
    Kate Summers

  39. There is no pain so great as the Memory of joy in present grief.

    Sympathy Quotes For Every Occasion

  40. End? No, the journey doesn’t end here. Death is just another path, one that we all must take. The gray rain-curtain of this world rolls back, and all turns to silver glass, and then you see it.
    J.R.R. Tolkien

  41. In the godforsaken, obscene quicksand of life, there is a deafening alleluia rising from the souls of those who weep, and of those who weep with those who weep. If you watch, you will see the hand of God putting the stars back in their skies one by one.
    Ann Weems

  42. The darker the night, the brighter the stars, The deeper the grief, the closer is God!
    Fyodor Dostoyevsky

  43. If the people we love are stolen from us, the way to have them live on is to never stop loving them.
    James O’Barr

  44. Although we may meet briefly in this worldly existence, it is never overshadowed by what lies beyond through eternal life given by belief in Christ Jesus.
    Byron R. Pulsifer

  45. We shall find peace. We shall hear angels, we shall see the sky sparkling with diamonds.
    Anyon Chekov

  46. I know for certain that we never lose the people we love, even to death. They continue to participate in every act, thought, and decision we make. Their love leaves an indelible imprint in our memories. We find comfort in knowing that our lives have been enriched by having shared their love.
    Leo Buscaglia

  47. In times of grief and sorrow I will hold you and rock you and take your grief and make it my own. When you cry I cry and when you hurt I hurt. And together we will try to hold back the floods to tears and despair and make it through the potholed street of life
    Nicholas Sparks


There is no question how hard it is to write a letter of sympathy to another person no matter whether they are a family member or a friend.

Finding just the right words to express our condolence in a letter is a hard stricken path to find. On the one hand, we drastically want to avoid being callous or disrespectful, and, at the same time, we want to convey genuine empathy and sympathy the best possible way available.

Some of this challenge to find the best words or expressions comes to you through the quotes that have been cited right on this page. These brief expressions of sympathy quotes, whether they are written on a card or enclosed along with flowers or some other requested remembrance serve to convey to the grieving person that you care about them during their time of grief.

The article below is offered as assistance in this sympathy card writing task.

Tips For Writing a Sympathy Letter
By Byron Pulsifer, © 2019

One of the most devastating times for anyone is the loss of a loved one. And, as a friend or relative, this also impacts you deeply. The thought of writing a sympathy letter for most people is one fraught with difficulty and hesitation. So, here are some tips that you may wish to consider as you sit done to write one of the most challenging of all letters.

In this day of computers, it is very easy for most of us to sit down at our keyboard and write a letter. But, did you know that it is still a lot better to write a sympathy letter by hand? Well, it is and for a very good reason. A handwritten note of sympathy expresses true condolence because it shows that you have taken the time, and energy, to express yourself during this most trying of times in a very personal manner. A handwritten note is often better remembered than a typed message.

One of the first things you can write in your letter is your expression of deepest sympathy at the loss of their loved one whether that is a spouse, child, relative or friend. Part of this letter can also be the recording of a fond memory of the individual that you remember, or it could be some unusual or charming, or funny characteristic that stood out in your mind over the years, or a special kind of act or kindness that the deceased performed for you that made a difference in your life.

And, as part of your note, you can offer to help them in many ways that may at first seem a bit strange. For example, after you send your sympathy note, and if you happen to live fairly close, you could arrange to go grocery shopping for them especially if they do not drive or feel too grief-stricken or overwhelmed to even go out. You could also volunteer to come over each day to cook a meal for them, and to freeze some prepared dishes so they wouldn't have to cook for themselves. One thing that can occur is that they won't feel much like eating alone so just your presence can help re-introduce some normalcy into their lives.

Your letter of sympathy should also include your full signature so they know exactly who sent the note. Sympathy notes should not be long-winded. Make them short with a true expression of sympathy.

The days following the funeral, especially the months following are some of the most difficult for someone who has lost a loved one. When everyone else has returned to their daily lives, this is a special time for you to assist with a daily call, a visit, or to help them attend to issues around the home that need to be done. Or, it is a time to simply be by their side open to any conversation, or to give comfort during moments of grief.

After Everyone Has Left
By Byron Pulsifer, © 2019

There is no harder point in life that comes eventually to us all when a loved one dies. In the beginning, there seems to be a lot of friends and relatives that are with the one who has suffered this great personal loss. But, it isn't too long afterward before most of them have returned to their own lives busy as they are with their own events and issues.

For those who have lost their loved one, especially a spouse or child, there is a huge hole in their emotional being that is now left unsatisfied. Suddenly, what was once a secure environment, predictable, and without many concerns is nothing but loneliness and feelings of helplessness. Their days are sometimes filled with daily chores because there is nothing else to occupy their time; or, they are so depressed that even preparing something to eat is a major chore that often goes undone, or filled with unhealthy snack foods.

This message is to those who know someone who has lost a loved one. This is your chance to see beyond what most either see or want to forget. This is a time to reach out to these people in all manner of communication.

It may be simply reaching out to them with a daily telephone call so that they have a chance to let their feelings or sadness find a cathartic vehicle. It may be that you are able to drop in to see them, or better yet, to take them out with you to dinner or supper. Within the next few months, they will need your support more than they did when they first experienced their loss. Why? It is simply a matter of understanding that grief can be your closest companion in the immediacy of the event, however, once the initial shock has worn off, there is a host of events that must be dealt with including deciding how you are going to live your life devoid of your companion.

There are things to clean up including deciding what to do with the other person's clothes, their hobby materials, the way the house was decorated, or the way the garden was laid out with certain types of flowers. All of these things they face alone unless you are there to help them and in some cases just to be there to talk with encouraging them to move along with some choices they are hesitant to make. This doesn't mean you force them to make changes because these changes or new routines will fall into place when the time is right for them. What it does mean, though, is that you are there to lend a shoulder, an ear, or a helping hand so they don't have to literally face it alone.

Condolence Words, Sample Letter
By Byron Pulsifer, © 2019

Nothing in life seems to prepare us for writing words of condolence to those who have just lost a loved one. There is no school, that I'm aware of, that has as part of its curriculum how to write letters of condolence or sympathy. On the other hand, I suppose writing this type of letter is one that we would hope we never have to write but that hope is farthest from the truth.

Many years ago, I had to write my first letter of sympathy to my best friends' mother. Sure, I could have avoided it; after all, I was one going to be one of the pallbearers and would have the opportunity to speak with her at the funeral. And, it wasn't as if I wasn't used to writing; I had to write on a daily basis as part of my job. The truth is that I could hardly say a word to his mother at the funeral; my mouth wouldn't work, tears welled in my eyes every time I attempted to say anything.

So, I was glad I decided to write to his mother. But, the right words, and even the beginning of the letter escaped me. How do you put in writing something so personal where your own loss is somewhat akin to the loss felt by a mother? You know the kind of friend I mean; one with whom you had an immediate connection, one who was there for you no matter what, one who never asked for anything in return except your friendship. And, to make matters even worse, my best friend was only thirty-two years old having died unexpectedly from a burst aneurysm.

Here is part of what I wrote; I won't use her real name or my friend's name. I hope these words help you to express your feelings of condolence.

"Dear Elizabeth:
How can I ever express my deepest hurt and sadness at Ben's death? How can I ever imagine what you feel, how you hurt, what loss you feel? My words, although inadequate, can only reflect my own deepest sorrow for I long for Ben to be with us both right now hoping upon hope that all of this is only a very bad dream.

Ben was more than my best friend; he was part of my family. He was always involved in my life, my dreams, my fun, and shared moments where we reveled in boy like antics. As the years past and we both graduated, I had to move to another city. But, how much joy it was to see Ben at my door ready to spend what time he could before driving back home.

As I look back, those weekends were some of my happiest moments because we were able to continue building a friendship, a camaraderie I never knew could exist to this extent, and to be part of each others' aspirations for the future.

There isn't a day that goes by that I don't think of Ben. His smile, his laugh, and his easy way with any people we both knew. I've never met anyone who didn't like him. I wish upon wish that he could be here. I miss him greatly. But, at least I have him captured in my heart, and have countless pictures of him and me throughout the years. I would gladly share these pictures with you, and I have sent some along with this note for you to treasure as well.

You can be proud forever of Ben; I know he loved you deeply. He always spoke of you with a gentleness of spirit, and with warmth obviously felt from the heart.

His spirit, his kindness, and my gratefulness that I had these years together with Ben will forever be part of my life, as much as I know that he will be with you.

My deepest sympathy, Ben's friend,"

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