Author Topic: Learning of a death, months later.  (Read 2031 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

snappylt

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 459
Learning of a death, months later.
« on: May 07, 2013, 03:59:12 PM »
Just curious what others think:

I received a long e-mail this morning from a fellow who was a dear friend in college.  We were groomsmen in each other's weddings many years ago.  Although we live maybe 1,500 miles apart, we have stayed in touch somewhat by e-mail and telephone over the years. (We call or write each other maybe two or three times a year.)

In this morning's e-mail, my old friend told me that his very elderly father died back in January after a very brief illness.  My friend said that he and his wife were chatting and they suddenly realized that nobody had thought to tell me.

The delay is not a problem for me.  (I'm not offended at all.)

Of course I sent a polite e-mail back at once this morning, and tonight or tomorrow I will write an old-fashioned paper letter saying how sorry I am for my friend's loss.  (I am sorry for his loss!)

My question is, would it be odd at this late date, almost four months after the funeral, if I were to send my old friend and his wife flowers or a green plant or something like that from a florist?  If he had told me right away back in January, I think I would probably have sent flowers or a plant or something... But I'm not sure if it would be "nice" or if it would be "odd" to do so now.

What do others think?

NestHolder

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 1139
Re: Learning of a death, months later.
« Reply #1 on: May 07, 2013, 04:02:47 PM »
I think it would be nice.

Your friend knows you didn't get the information at the time, after all.

Outdoor Girl

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 14006
Re: Learning of a death, months later.
« Reply #2 on: May 07, 2013, 04:02:57 PM »
I think it would be a nice thing to do.  My only other thought was to see if you could find their hometown newspaper on-line and check back issues for the obituary, in case they had 'in lieu of flowers, a donation to X charity would be appreciated'.
I have CDO.  It is like OCD but with the letters in alphabetical order, as they should be.
Ontario

Hmmmmm

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 6563
Re: Learning of a death, months later.
« Reply #3 on: May 07, 2013, 04:04:34 PM »
I wouldn't send flowers but I would send a memorial contribution to a charity that you knew he or his father supported. Or make a memorial donation to ya'lls college in the father's name.

TurtleDove

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 6131
Re: Learning of a death, months later.
« Reply #4 on: May 07, 2013, 04:36:23 PM »
Some colleagues that I work with regularly but not constantly learned of my husband's passing months after the fact, mostly because I had yet another name change and they asked about it.  The next day the firm delivered flowers to me at work with their condolences.  It meant a lot to me.

After an acquaintances death, most people can move on pretty quickly and it can be easy to forget that even though those close to the deceased may be living their lives, they still mourn the loss.  Just my two cents, but I really appreciate that I still get the occasional card or email or text letting me know that people are thinking of me.

Oh Joy

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 1370
Re: Learning of a death, months later.
« Reply #5 on: May 07, 2013, 05:02:56 PM »
This may seem like an odd answer, but if it were me...

I'd send the heartfelt note now, then wait to send a plant and a 'thinking of you' on the anniversary next January.

Best wishes.

*inviteseller

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 1821
  • I am Queen Mommy
Re: Learning of a death, months later.
« Reply #6 on: May 07, 2013, 05:13:12 PM »
I think it is a wonderful gesture.  I have had people send me flowers on the year anniversary of a death of a loved one and it made it nice to know I wasn't alone in my mourning.

White Lotus

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 491
Re: Learning of a death, months later.
« Reply #7 on: May 07, 2013, 07:02:22 PM »
Oh Joy nailed it -- condolence letter now, flowers/plant/donation on the anniversary.  Nice.

hobish

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 18186
  • Release the gelfling!
Re: Learning of a death, months later.
« Reply #8 on: May 07, 2013, 07:06:52 PM »
Some colleagues that I work with regularly but not constantly learned of my husband's passing months after the fact, mostly because I had yet another name change and they asked about it.  The next day the firm delivered flowers to me at work with their condolences.  It meant a lot to me.

After an acquaintances death, most people can move on pretty quickly and it can be easy to forget that even though those close to the deceased may be living their lives, they still mourn the loss.  Just my two cents, but I really appreciate that I still get the occasional card or email or text letting me know that people are thinking of me.

That's kind of what i was thinking. There will be a flood of condolences after a death. I would think a little something down the line would be really thoughtful and nice.
It's alright, man. I'm only bleeding, man. Stay hungry, stay free, and do the best you can.
~Gaslight Anthem

Piratelvr1121

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 11121
Re: Learning of a death, months later.
« Reply #9 on: May 07, 2013, 07:25:14 PM »
I found out months later when a neighbor's sister died.  Neighbor and I weren't super close but we were friendly. I'd go over to her house to chat now and then and got along with each other pretty well.  Her sister had been very ill and the two of them had been super close, best friends in addition to being sisters so neighbor friend was hit really hard.   

We didn't talk every day and sometimes a few months would pass between conversations and it was always me going to her house but I knew she had some issues so I didn't really mind when she'd go awhile without communication.

Anyway I went over to say hi since I hadn't seen her in awhile and when I did she seemed sad so I asked if she was okay and that's when she told me her sister had passed a couple months ago.  I'd recently learned how to make a tree of life necklace, knew what her sister's favorite color was and made one for my neighbor and she really appreciated it. 
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars.  You have a right to be here. Be cheerful, strive to be happy. -Desiderata

LadyR

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 1007
    • Musings of A Pinterest Mom
Re: Learning of a death, months later.
« Reply #10 on: May 07, 2013, 10:36:33 PM »
When my father died, a neighbour was in Florida for the winter, when she came home, she sent my mom a card and brought a pie by. We were very appreciative fo the guesture.


kareng57

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 12310
Re: Learning of a death, months later.
« Reply #11 on: May 07, 2013, 11:41:57 PM »
IMO flowers are perfectly fine several months later, if you're so inclined.  It would not have bothered me at all after my Dh's death - he had been retired and a lot of former co-workers didn't hear about it till somewhat later.

I certainly respect other peoples' traditions, but I truly don't understand the "need" to wait until the anniversary of the death to send condolences.