6 Tips On What To Say To A Grieving Friend
















Grieving can be extremely challenging. When someone you love has recently suffered a loss, you may not know what to say.  This article highlights six ways to help a loved one struggling with loss.

Six Tips On What To Say To A Grieving Friend

#1: Hold space for them
Someone who is grieving doesn’t need you to fix anything for them. They need you to just be there. So whatever capacity of listening you can offer helps them to feel heard and seen in their experience.

#2: Validate their grief with reflection
When your grieving friend speaks to you, reflect what they’re saying to you. Especially when you can sense they are sharing in their vulnerability. Listen and let them know you understand.


#3: Show up, offering support
Saying you’re there for someone and being there for them are two different things. Show up with lasagna. Rub their neck. Pick up their groceries. Make their bed. The initial stages of grief are a great time to act more, listen more and speak less.

#4: Embrace little moments, it’s not always what is being said. Sometimes just sitting silently with a friend can be just what your grieving friend needs. Don’t feel the need to fill the verbal void.


#5: Be consistent
Grief is a very isolating journey. Showing up for your friend consistently gives them a sense of safety. It can be as simple as a text saying you’re thinking of them, or a drop in on them to say hello. It doesn’t need to be complicated, simple is great.

#6: Be proactive
Take the initiative, reach out to your friend. Sending them a gift, can let them know you are there. Be the first one to call them. It’s hard to put any effort into relationships when you’re grieving, so do that heavy lifting for them.

If you want to know more ways you can help your loved one struggling with a loss, contact our experts at Found and Sons. Our expertise and insights can help you support your loved one through a difficult time.




What To Consider When Choosing Between Cremation or Burial

A woman and man sitting at a desk in an office. Discussing cremation vs. burial

When planning ahead for end-of-life preparations, or making arrangements following the loss of a loved one, many families struggle with choosing between cremation or a traditional burial. Here are some things to consider that may help make the choice easier.

The Difference Between Cremation and Burial

Both cremation and burial practices have been in existence for centuries as a method of final disposition. During the cremation process, a body is incinerated until all that remains is ash. Whereas during a burial, the body is allowed to naturally decompose over time. Both are common and safe methods of handling remains.

With burials, the body may be interred in the ground or entombed in a mausoleum above ground. Bodies are embalmed before being placed in a casket. At Found and Sons Funeral Chapels & Cremation Service, we require caskets to be enclosed in a burial vault to prevent the ground from sinking.

Cremated remains, on the other hand, can be kept in an urn, scattered in a way that is meaningful to the deceased, placed in a columbarium, interred in the ground, or entombed in a mausoleum. Some religious practices may require that the cremated remains are kept together and stored or displayed in an approved location.

Both cremation and burial processes can take place at any time. For example, shortly after the deceased has passed away, after a traditional funeral service has taken place, or before a memorial service.

Consider the Deceased’s Wishes and Religious Affiliation

The choice between cremation or burial is often deeply personal. For example, some families prefer to choose burial out of a desire to show respect for their loved one’s body. Other families feel that allowing the body to decay has the opposite impact. This is why making pre-planning arrangements and having these conversations with family members is often so important.

Many religions have differing views on cremation and burials. The Roman Catholic Church has stated that bodies may be cremated, but the ashes must be buried in a cemetery or sacred location. Some Christian denominations (incl. Baptist and the Eastern Orthodox Church) do not support cremation, while others such as the Methodist Seventh-Day Adventists and Lutheran churches do. Judaism has traditionally recommended against cremation, although some sects have relaxed their stance over the years.

Alternatively, cremation is a required practice for some Eastern religions (Hinduism and Buddhism). Sikhs tend to prefer cremation, but do not prohibit burial, while Muslim cultures forbid cremation.

Additional Factors to Consider

Religious beliefs and personal preference are perhaps some of the most important things to consider when choosing between cremation and burial. However, there are other things to keep in mind as well, such as cost and environmental impact. Cremation is typically a more cost-effective service compared to burial.

When it comes to the environment, there are different points of view. The cremation process results in high emissions; however, burials require a significantly larger footprint of land.


Still struggling to choose? We understand, and we’re here to help. Our professional team can walk you through the pre-planning process, one step at a time, and help you choose the options that work best for you. Visit our website to learn more about our services, or call (800) 207-3530 for one-on-one assistance.


How To Write A Memorable Obituary

how to write an obituary - candle notebook and flower

An obituary is a touching way to announce the death of a loved one and celebrate their life’s accomplishments. However, many family members find it difficult to write an obituary, especially if grief is creating writer’s block. Here are some tips that can help make the process smooth and ensure that your loved one’s memory is celebrated.

Set the Tone

There are many things to do when a loved one passes away and it is easy to feel overwhelmed. Pre-planning the funeral details can help alleviate some of the stress associated with loss. Grief support resources can help family members understand and process emotions.

Before you sit down to write the obituary, take time to set the tone. Do your best to remove any distractions, light your favorite candle if you’d like, and spend some time in meditation or prayer before you begin. This can help create space for meaningful reflection rather than checking off an item on the to-do list. Typing the obituary helps prevent any mistakes during posting, but many people choose to write the first draft by hand.

Start With the Basics

An obituary typically starts by listing the basic information about the deceased, such as when they were born, the date they passed, and any other relevant biographical information (Where did they live? Where did they go to school? What was their career like?).

Include a list of surviving family members, as well as any notable predeceased family members. You don’t need to include the entire family tree, but these people should be listed by name:

  • Parents
  • Their spouse/partner
  • Any children or step-children—along with their spouse/partner’s names in brackets, if applicable
  • Siblings, including half- and step-siblings
  • Grandchildren and great-grandchildren
  • Surviving in-laws, if relevant

If you’d like to highlight any additional family members, you can group them together by relationship—such as “five nieces, and two nephews.” People with very large families may choose to do this for grandchildren and great-grandchildren as well.

You may also want to include any notable information, such as the date of the service, a memorial donation fund, or anything else you’d like the public to know.

Add Some of Their Personality

Personality quirks are often what make your loved one who they are, so don’t be afraid to showcase that in their obituary. Make it personal by sharing their passions and hobbies. Don’t just focus on what they did in their life, talk about what their life was like, too. Be mindful of the length, however—many newspaper publications charge by the word. You may want to have a formal announcement for the paper and a more personal obituary for the funeral service.

Don’t Forget to Proofread

As with any important writing, don’t forget to proofread! Have someone else look it over, or run it through an online spelling and grammar program such as Grammarly.

At Found and Sons Funeral Chapel and Cremation Services, our goal is to help you navigate the end of your loved one’s life. We strive to make it a time of reflection, appreciation, and celebration, so that we may help you honor and preserve your loved one’s memory. Visit our website to learn more about our services or call (800) 207-3530 today.

A Memory To Hold On To

There are many ways to honor and remember a loved one after they have passed. For Christi Thompson, her way of honoring someone is by creating memorial pillows, made from the clothing that a loved one wore.

Christi has been a Culpeper resident since moving here from Fairfax, VA when she was 15. It’s no surprise that she picked up sewing since her mother, Cynthia Godfrey, was the seamstress for the Culpeper County Sheriff’s Department. Cynthia became well known in the community for her seamstress skills. After doing some work for one gentleman in the Sheriff’s Department, she soon had other officers requesting her to tailor their uniforms. By referrals and her quality of work, Cynthia found herself with a full time job of keeping the officers uniforms looking sharp. 

Cynthia had a very close relationship with Christi, her son-in-law, and grandsons. “She was basically a second mom in our household” says Christi. Known as “Mimi” to her grandsons, she helped Christi in homeschooling her grandsons. In 2016, Cynthia passed away after fighting a brave and courageous battle with ovarian cancer. Her spirit still lives on through Christi, as she has filled her mother’s shoes and is now the seamstress for the Sheriff’s Department.

The first pillow that Christi ever made was actually made for a very close friend and co-worker that had passed away. The daughter of her late and former co-worker came to have a pillow made out of a shirt that her mom, Carol, often wore. The shirt that was that was provided had a slight coffee stain underneath the collar. For the people that didn’t know Carol, they wouldn’t quite understand the meaning behind the stain. Carol was an avid coffee drinker when she would be working with Christi in Belk Department Store of Culpeper. It wouldn’t be a surprise to see Carol with a coffee stain on her shirt from drinking too quickly. Co-workers and friends always found it funny and somewhat normal to see the stain on Carol’s shirt by the end of her shift. Carol’s daughter had the pillow made as a way to keep her mother’s memory and presence with those that are still here.

Christi enjoys making these memorial pillows because of how they represent the person without words. As Christi finished telling the story behind Carol’s pillow, she began to explain that the pillows in our showroom were pillows made from pieces of her mom, Cynthia’s, clothing. She went on to explain how special it is to see a person’s clothing and just feel like you’re right back at home with that person. “It really is about keeping the spirit and presence of a loved one alive” Christi says. 

To have a memorial pillow created for your loved one that is deceased, you can contact Christi at [email protected] or visit Found in Sons Funeral Chapel and Cremation Service in Culpeper, VA.