CondolencesEtiquetteFuneralsHow to Honor Someone Who has Died When You Cannot Travel

March 16, 2020Obitia

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In this day and age when family and friends often live in different parts of the country, you may not always be able to be in person for a funeral. This is especially the case as of the writing of this article with COVID-19 (Coronavirus) currently restricting travel for most people. However, there are ways you can still honor your loved one and friends who have passed from a distance.


Leverage Technology to Be “Present”

By using either a cellphone or a computer and one of several services you can view the funeral if someone is willing to live-stream or video call with you during the memorial or funeral service. Most phones have a built-in video calling system, otherwise, you can use Whatsapp, Facebook’s app, Skype, Zoom, or Google to live-stream and video chat. Some funeral homes are installing built-in cameras in order to make this service more streamlined for family and friends unable to attend the service. If you are unable to attend try calling the funeral home to ask them if they offer this kind of service or contact a loved one and see if they will be willing to video call you when the service starts.

While you won’t get the same feeling of camaraderie as you would if you were physically in attendance, you will still get to hear the eulogy and feel like you are there, as well as give your condolences to others present. Being connected to the funeral or memorial service in some way will help you work through your grief.


Help Family in Other Ways

For many people, helping or working is a constructive way of getting through the grieving process (Learn more about the 5 Stages of Grief). If you are not able to attend in person, you may not be able to grieve the way you want. One way to mitigate this is to offer to help with planning from a distance. Many things can be handled, planned, and ordered online, such as flower arrangements and stationery. Many of these services are available on the Obitia website itself. Friends and family will appreciate the help and you will feel engaged with the process. Other items or services you may need can be found online and you can call to organize and coordinate.


Grieve in Your Own Way

Just because you can’t partake in the memorial service or funeral itself doesn’t mean you are not allowed to grieve or celebrate your loved one in other ways. Try planting a memorial tree or writing a letter. While it is usually best to go through the grieving process with others, you can do things to celebrate the memory of your loved one on your own.

Another popular way of celebrating a loved one is to do something charitable, either a donation or an event. You can go for a charitable run on their behalf or raise money amongst your social circle or network to give a donation in their name. Even just donating some of your free time to a local cause is a great way to honor your loved one.



Whether you are unable to attend a funeral because of money, illness, or some other reason that doesn’t mean that you can’t contribute and partake. Leveraging technology and helping from afar are the two most practical and easiest ways for you to honor your loved one without traveling to the funeral itself. You can also do something charitable in their honor, whether rit is a donation in their name or dedicating yourself to helping others. There is no right or wrong way to honor a loved one who has passed.




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