The Important Role of a “Support Person” During a Funeral Service

Aymes Sarah
4 min readJan 10, 2020

I’m celebrating the unsung heroes of this difficult time and offering 8 ways to be an excellent support person

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The “support person” is a role that typically goes unnoticed in the chaos of grief.

Unfortunately, I have been to many funerals and I’ve noticed there is always someone who helps the family the most in their time of loss. This is their support person.

I will state the obvious and say funerals are difficult. They are a public affair and all eyes are on the mourners.

A couple of years ago, my cousins lost their father. One of these cousins is also my best friend, she’s married and has two children.

She is a very strong person but losing a parent is gut-wrenching, she was devastated. She helped plan the funeral and was with him when he passed away. This was her time to grieve the loss of someone she loved dearly.

Naturally, her husband was at the funeral. He was so attentive to her and her family. He made conversation with the attendees, while keeping an eye on his wife and her immediate family.

I noticed him jumping in to handle anything that would be an inconvenience to the grieving family. I thought he was an excellent support person.

It is not an easy role but every grieving family has one. A support person is like the maid of honor or best man at a wedding. Naturally, it is a more solemn role. However, they take control of the situation and make the day run smoothly.

Unlike the maid of honor or best man’s job, it is not a role that appointed or discussed by the family. Obviously, they have a lot on their minds. Usually, the support person slips into the role naturally.

From what I’ve observed, the support person is usually a partner or very close friend to one of the immediate family members of the deceased.

The support person allows the entire family to grieve together without the interruption of arbitrary details that emerge before and after the funeral service.

For obvious reasons, the support person is usually someone very close to the family. They know the dynamics of the family and who is the most fragile in this

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Aymes Sarah

Wife, mother, and researcher of a myriad of subjects. I love to write about anything and everything! Writer for The Startup, Better Marketing, & The Ascent👊