Choosing a Eulogist
A eulogy is a speech in praise of someone who has just died. It
is usually presented by someone who was close to the honoree.
As the planner, you will want to invite three or four people to
each deliver a eulogy. An ideal eulogist knows the person well and
is a practiced speaker. Each speaker should also have a unique
perspective on the honoree's life - a work colleague, a childhood
friend, college roommate or someone who speaks for the family. They
should introduce themselves when they begin and explain their
relationship to the honoree. If you have three or four speakers,
each one should aim to take about three to five minutes.
Ask for copies of each speaker's remarks ahead of time so that
you (or the person you designate) can make sure that two eulogists
don't duplicate each other's remarks. This is a great opportunity
to gather the inner circle and make sure that the important stories
about your honoree are captured, and if a favorite story is missing
you can ask a speaker to include it.
A eulogist who is concerned about being too emotional about her
loss to stay composed can go to the pulpit or the podium with a
back-up person for support and a printed copy of the eulogy to hand
off so that the alternate could step in and finish. Some speakers
who are concerned about their ability to perform record their
remarks and are ready with a good, cued sound system just in
For tips on how to prepare a eulogy, visit our Traditions and