130 Sympathy Messages for the Loss of a Father


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Have you ever picked up greeting cards in the sympathy card aisle and noticed that the words in “loss of father” cards seem clichéd and overused?

Let’s say you decide to go it alone and craft your own message. You might notice that it can be tough to grasp for the perfect customized message — even if you think you’re pretty good with words.

You can’t dash off the first message that comes to mind, either. What if you say the wrong thing or somehow make it worse? With a little forethought, it’s possible to avoid these mishaps. 

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Even if you're about to purchase a sympathy gift basket, sent fresh-cut flowers, or sign a condolence card, you want to write a message that shows heart and empathy.

Through this kind gesture, you can offer a tiny bit of comfort during what is likely one of the worst times of this person’s life. 

Tip: If your friend or loved one set up a memorial page, share your sympathy message there along with a memory of their loved one. 

Where Can You Post a Sympathy Message?

Thanks to the rise of sharing news digitally, there are many places where you can share a sympathy message. Before deciding where to post, make sure the loss is publically known and that your friend or loved one wouldn't mind receiving a sympathy message on a public forum.

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A memorial page

A memorial page is a perfect place to share a message of sympathy and tribute to a friend or loved one. Cake offers a free memorial page builder that provides space for an obituary, tributes and messages, pictures, and a fundraising tool to assist with funeral expenses and other costs related to the death of a loved one.

Social media

If your friend or loved one posted about their loss on their personal social media pages, then you can respond to the announcement with a message of sympathy. You can also create a message in tribute to their loved one and tag them in the message.

Sympathy Messages for a Friend that Lost a Dad

Example of a sympathy message for a friend that lost a dad over an image of a card and a flower

Your friend’s dad was probably a positive part of his or her life. He may have offered wisdom during tough teen years or taught your friend how to ride a bike as a child. What can you say to a close friend who lost such an important person?

Here are a few ideas of sympathy quotes for a friend who has lost a father:

1. I’m so sorry to hear about your dad’s death. Your father was one of the kindest people I’ve ever met, and I was lucky to get to know him. I’ll miss him, too.

2. I looked up to your dad and was deeply saddened to hear about his death. I’ll always have great memories of him. I’m so sorry for your loss. 

3. Your dad was a great mentor to me and I’m so sorry to hear of his passing. I’m keeping your family in my thoughts. If you need to talk to someone, I’m here for you. 

4. I’m so sorry that your dad has passed away. Please let me know what I can do for you during this difficult time. I’d love to bring a meal over — let me know what times would work for you. 

5. Your dad was such a kind man, and I know you’ll miss him. I feel so lucky to have known him so well. You and your family are in my heart. 

6. I’m really going to miss your dad. I admired him as an intelligent, kindhearted man, and I’m so sorry for your loss. I can’t imagine what you’re going through right now and am keeping you in my thoughts. 

7. Sending hugs and prayers your way. I am so sorry to hear about your dad’s death, and please know that I’ll miss him, too. 

8. Your dad led a remarkable life — I never heard anyone say a bad word about him. I’m lucky that I got to know him, and I’ll miss him. 

9. Your dad touched a lot of people’s lives — mine included. I’m so glad I got the chance to know him, and I’m heartbroken that my mentor is gone. Sending love and prayers your way. 

10. I’ll always cherish the memories I had with your family. I loved hanging out at family barbecues and parties with them. I’m so sorry about your dad’s loss. Please extend my condolences to your family.

11. “The road through grief is a rocky one. Traveling along it requires courage, patience, wisdom, and hope.” – Candy Lightner

12. I know you feel lost and heartbroken by the death of your father. This quote reminded me of you: “Sorrow makes us all children again - destroys all differences of intellect. The wisest know nothing.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

13. “I hope these words comfort you: “What is there to do when people die – people so dear and rare – but bring them back by remembering?” – May Sarton

14. There are things that we don’t want to happen but have to accept, things we don’t want to know but have to learn, and people we can’t live without but have to let go.

15. “Unable are the loved to die, for love is immortality.” – Emily Dickinson

Gift tip: Send a friend a small gift along with your message. If you need to send something speedy, buy them a digital gift card. if you can wait a few days, we recommend this large snack box 

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Sympathy Messages for a Relative Who Lost a Father

Example of a sympathy message for a relative who lost a father over an image of a card and flowers

Chances are if a relative lost a father, you were also related to the deceased in some way. This can make it easier to bond over shared memories and experiences. You can choose any memory that evokes the feeling you want. 

What about adding a funny story about your family member’s dad at a family barbecue? What about a memory you have of going fishing as a child as a reminder of how much he’ll be missed? No matter what you choose, sharing a personal connection is a heartwarming touch to any condolence card.

Here are some ideas for sympathy quotes for a relative who has lost a father:

16. I have such great memories of your dad. No one was better at telling jokes, and I loved being around him at family gatherings. I’m so sorry for your loss — you’re in my thoughts and prayers. 

17. I’m so sorry to hear about your father’s death. I loved seeing your dad at family reunions — he always lit up the room and was also so caring. You’re on my mind, and if you need to talk to someone, give me a call. 

18. Your dad was always there for me as a mentor figure and a fun person to be around when I was growing up. I’ll always remember how he listened to and cared for everyone in the family. I’ll miss him, too. Sending my thoughts and prayers to you. 

19. I’ll always remember your dad as a very caring relative. He loved so many people and brought out the best in everyone. I’ll miss him so much. Let me know if there’s any way I can help you. 

20. I was so sad to hear about the loss of your father. Sending prayers your way. I know you have a lot of great memories of him — I hope they comfort you. I’ll always remember him as a kind, thoughtful man. He went out of his way to help so many people and left a great legacy.

21. Your father was so proud of you and loved you so much. I hope this comforts you as you deal with his loss. I’m so sorry about his death. I’d love to help you in any way possible. Let me know what I can do. 

22. Your dad was always a joy to have around. I loved seeing him at family gatherings and reunions. He brought so much joy to those around him. I’m so sorry about his death and will miss him. He shared a lot of wisdom with me that made him a powerful mentor figure in my life. 

23. I’ll always remember your dad. He left such a heartwarming legacy with his family, and I’ll miss him too. Sending love and prayers to you. 

24. I always admired your dad’s ability to get people to warm up to him. He touched so many lives, and I’m sure you’re proud of his memory. I’m so sorry about his death.

25. I’ll always treasure the fun memories I have with your dad. He’ll be missed by many.

26. “There is a land of the living and a land of the dead and the bridge is love, the only survival, the only meaning.” – Thornton Wilder

27. “Thou hast but taken up thy lamp and gone to bed; I stay a little longer, as one stays/ To cover up the embers that still burn.” – Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

28. “With love that is almost joy I remember them.” – John Hall Wheelock

29. “There is a sacredness in tears. They are not the mark of weakness, but of power. They speak more eloquently than ten thousand tongues. They are the messengers of overwhelming grief, of deep contrition, and of unspeakable love.” – Washington Irving

30. “Sometimes it’s okay that the only thing you did today was breathe.” – Yumi Sakugawa

Gift tip: Buy your relative a digital photo frame and load photos of the deceased before you gift it. Alternatively, you can buy a set of traditional frames

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Sympathy Messages for Coworkers, Clients, or Bosses that Lost a Father

Example of a sympathy message for a coworker over an image of a card an flower

Striking the balance of professionalism and empathy is hard. This is especially true if you didn’t know the coworker, client, or boss very well. You can’t share memories or achieve a personal touch that you’re lacking. If you're looking for more inspiration, you can check our guide on condolence emails for clients.

You can also try getting your coworkers together and chipping in on a gourmet sympathy gift basket, like this inexpensive charcuterie and cheese basket from Amazon. Try these ideas to spark a personalized sympathy message for someone from the office who has lost a father: 

31. Thinking of you during this difficult time. I’m so sorry for your loss and want to extend my sympathies to you. I’m sure your father was a great man who will be missed. 

32. I’m so sorry about your father’s death. Please accept my heartfelt condolences. You’re in my thoughts, and I hope you feel comforted in the days ahead. 

33. I wanted to let you know that you’re on my mind and I’m here for you if you need anything. I’m so sorry about your father’s death. 

34. I am so saddened to hear about the loss of your father. My thoughts and prayers are with you, and I want to offer my sincere condolences. 

35. I’m so sorry about your father’s death. I hope the good memories you have of him will comfort you in the days ahead. 

36. Please accept my heartfelt sympathies during this difficult time. My thoughts are with you. 

37. Please accept my condolences for the death of your father. Sending well wishes and prayers to you and your family. 

38. I’m so sorry for the loss of your father. Please accept my condolences and let me know if there’s anything I can do to help during this difficult time. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your loved ones right now. 

39. I hope you’re able to find peace and comfort during this difficult time. I’m so sorry you and your loved ones are going through this. Please accept my condolences, and let me know if I can help in any way. 

40. Please accept my heartfelt sympathies. I hope you’re able to find peace through the good memories you had with your father. 

41. I always loved hearing stories about your father. It sounds as if he was a wonderful man. I was sorry to hear about his passing.

42. The whole office has been thinking about you this week. Please don’t worry about any of the upcoming deadlines. Your team has got it covered.

43. Your work family is here for you! Sophie will contact you tomorrow to organize meals for the rest of the week. We love you and are sorry for your loss.

44. Thinking of you, your mom, and the rest of your family as you say goodbye to your dad.

45. Please don’t worry about any work-related issues for the next week. We have forwarded your calls and email so you can spend time comforting your family and reliving precious memories.

Gift tip: Every client or coworker loves getting a basket of fancy treats. We recommend sending this charcuterie snack box or dried fruit and nut basket.

Sympathy Messages for the Loss of a Father-in-Law

What do you say when offering condolences for the loss of a father-in-law? Of course, this may come up if you know the in-law of the deceased, but you don’t know the children. 

Here are some sample messages to write or say to someone in this situation.

  1. I was sorry to hear about the loss of your father-in-law. Please accept my sympathies.
  2. Please extend my love to your entire family for the loss of your father, father-in-law, and grandfather. You are all in my thoughts.
  3. I was sad to hear that you recently lost your father-in-law. I had the pleasure of meeting him at your wedding, and he seemed to be a kind, soft-spoken man.
  4. You and your wife are certainly in my prayers following the passing of your father-in-law. I am glad she has you to lean on during this difficult time.
  5. It’s hard to know what to say in times like these. However, I just wanted to let you know that I am thinking of you.
  6. Please accept my condolences on the passing of your father-in-law. He was well-loved in our community and known for his generosity and humbleness. 
  7. I can’t believe that Tom is gone! He had such a vibrant and energetic presence. I know your entire family is probably reeling from the loss—hugs to you all.
  8. I’m sorry I never met your father-in-law. He sounds as if he were an amazing man who experienced many adventures. Please offer my condolences to your husband, children, and the rest of the family.
  9. You were lucky to have such a close relationship with your father-in-law. It sounds as if he were a truly remarkable man, and I know you will miss him. Please know that I am thinking of you. Let’s set a coffee date soon so you can tell me more about Rob.
  10. Your family has been on my mind lately. You all have been through so much. Please accept my deepest sympathy for the loss of your father-in-law. Even though his death was expected, I know it is never easy.
  11. I know how close you were to your father-in-law, so I know his death is difficult for you. Please know that I am happy to help out during this time. I can pick up Rob’s cousins from the airport if that would help.
  12. Hugs to you, my friend!
  13. I am praying for peace and comfort for you and your entire family.
  14. Even though I’ll see you tonight at the visitation, I wanted to tell you how sorry I was to hear about Susan’s father. I know how important he was to your entire family.
  15. It’s times like these that you are reminded of the importance of family and friends. I am lucky to have you in both categories. 

Sympathy Messages for the Loss of a Father and Grandfather

When offering online condolences, you may sometimes find it necessary to offer sympathy to multiple generations of a family. Here’s how to word such messages.

  1. Johnson Family – I know you are hurting following the loss of your husband, father, father-in-law, grandfather, brother, and uncle. However, please know that our family is here for you during this difficult time. Sending much love, The Smith Family
  2. I’m sorry I can’t be there for your dad’s funeral. Please know that I have been thinking of you non-stop. Give your babies hugs from me. I will visit soon.
  3. I’ve never met anyone as excited to be a grandfather as your dad was. I must have watched that video where you announced your pregnancy a dozen times because your dad’s reaction was so hilarious. I know you are thankful that your dad was able to meet Kinzie before he passed. 
  4. I hope the memories you shared with your dad and grandpa will give you some solace as you learn to navigate life without Charles. 
  5. Your dad always gushed with pride when talking about you and your kids. You were precious to him. I am so sorry for your loss.
  6. You (and yours) are in my thoughts and prayers. 
  7. My thoughts are with you as you grieve the loss of the daddy of your childhood, the frustrating dad of your teen years, your knowledgeable father who you grew to depend on as an adult, and the loving grandpa to your kids. 
  8. I know you are heartbroken that your kids lost their Papa. Thinking of you all as you learn how to navigate life without Paul.
  9. I know nothing I can say will make you feel better after the loss of your father (and grandfather to your kids). However, please know that I am a shoulder you can cry on and a listening ear to hear stories about your dad.
  10. Your father was blessed with a remarkable life, three wonderful children, and 15 great-grandchildren. He certainly had a life worth celebrating.
  11. “To her, the name of father was another name for love.” – Fanny Fern
  12. “A father is someone you look up to no matter how tall you grow.” – Unknown
  13. “She did not stand alone, but what stood behind her, the most potent moral force in her life, was the love of her father.” – Harper Lee
  14. “A grandfather is someone with silver in his hair and gold in his heart.” – Unknown
  15. “Blessed indeed is the man who hears many gentle voices call him father.” – Lydia Maria Child

Sympathy Messages for the Loss of a Father and Husband

Unless you offer sympathy messages to someone you don’t know well, you may know several members of the deceased’s family. Here are ways to sign an online memorial website or card when you want to offer condolences to several people simultaneously.

  1. Martha, Stephen, and Gwen – Please accept my sympathy for losing your husband and father. I know the last three months have been difficult on your entire family, and you are all devastated by the loss of Tom. However, you were all wonderful caregivers and gave Tom a peaceful end. You should feel proud of that.
  2. I know none of us can take William’s place; he was irreplaceable. However, we will be there if you need someone to coach Little Billy’s baseball team or meet Olivia’s prom date. In other words, you aren’t alone. We’ve got your back.
  3. I don’t know what to say, except for – I’m so sorry you are going through this. Please know that I am available if you need any help. 
  4. My heart goes out to you and your sweet family. Ethan was such a proud father. I remember how his eyes lit up when talking about the twins. 
  5. I know there’s nothing I can say to help you during this difficult time. But, I wanted to tell you that you don’t have to worry about the swim carpool for the rest of the year. Let us take this small burden from you so you can focus on more important things. 
  6. Although it’s difficult today to see beyond the sorrow, May looking back in memory help comfort you tomorrow.
  7. Although I sure wish Gary could do it himself, I will be glad to tell your kids stories of our childhood together when they get older. Gary was such a fantastic life-long friend, and I can’t believe he is gone.
  8. When I think of Peter, I will always envision him as the coach of the boys’ Little League team. He was so patient and kind to all the kids. They all felt they could grow up as baseball stars and great men.
  9. Your husband and father was one of the kindest people I have ever met. Many people from the community will mourn his loss.
  10. You and Stephen created the most beautiful little family together. I’m sure he will look down and smile as he watches the kids grow.
  11. “A good father is one of the most unsung, unpraised, unnoticed and yet one of the most valuable assets in our society.” – Billy Graham
  12. “The heart of a father is the masterpiece of nature.” – Antoine François Prévost
  13. The imprint of a father remains forever on the life of the child.” – Roy Lessin
  14. “Father!—to God himself we cannot give a holier name!” – William Wordsworth
  15. A father’s love is eternal and without end.
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Sympathy Messages for the Loss of a Father From a Company or Organization

Perhaps part of your job is to send condolence emails to your clients. Maybe you wish to reach out to a grieving coworker or boss on behalf of a company or organization. These messages are typically more formal than those you would send on your own. Here are various ways to offer sympathy to someone connected by business.

  1. On behalf of your entire work family, please accept our sympathy for the loss of your father. 
  2. We were saddened to hear about the loss of your father. Please know that you are in our thoughts and prayers. 
  3. It is with great sadness and a heavy heart that I write this note. On behalf of everyone at Rogers Bath and Shower, I would like to offer our sincerest sympathies for the loss of your father and our founder, Roger. He will be missed.
  4. On behalf of Mousetrap Industries, I would like to offer our sincerest condolences on the death of your father. Marcos was a faithful employee for 18 years and a good friend to many in our office. He will be missed.
  5. On behalf of everyone at St. Michael’s Lutheran Church, we would like to express our deepest condolences at the passing of your father, Spencer. Spencer served our congregation in many different capacities. 
  6. We are deeply saddened to hear about your father’s passing. We hope you have many family members and friends to gather around you during this difficult time. Please accept the deepest condolences from our entire team.
  7. Everyone is thinking of you right now. Our hearts go out to you and your entire family.
  8. The entire leadership team, managers, and crew would like to offer support during this difficult time. We are sorry for your loss. From J.K. and Associates
  9. We think of you as family. And when a family member is hurting, we offer our love and support. Thinking of you following the loss of your father. Rossville Middle School Faculty and Staff
  10. The employees and leadership team of the AWA would like to offer our support and condolences to you during this difficult time. 

Sympathy Messages for the Loss of a Father for a Flower Note

Some people send flowers to the funeral if they know they can’t attend the service. Others attend the service AND send flowers or another type of sympathy gift basket. Regardless of your choice, here are some sample sympathy messages to send with the floral arrangement.

  1. I’m so sorry I couldn’t be there with you today. Please know that I am thinking of your entire magnificent family and wishing you heartfelt sympathy.
  2. Gone but never forgotten.
  3. Michael will always be in our hearts. So sorry for your loss.
  4. With lots of love, Cindy.
  5. “If there ever comes a day when we can’t be together, keep me in your heart. I’ll stay there forever.” A.A. Milne
  6. We thought of your dad when we saw this arrangement of daisies. He always had a sunny, happy personality!
  7. Our hearts are filled with sadness and tears, but our memories are filled with smiles and laughter of the good times we shared over the years.
  8. Please accept this small token of our sympathy following the loss of your father.
  9. We wish we could be there in person to give you a big hug. We love you!
  10. Even though these roses aren’t nearly as pretty as those your dad grew, they reminded us of him. 

Religious Sympathy Messages for the Loss of a Father

If you and the recipient of the message share a common religious belief, consider sharing a religious sympathy message. The message might seem disingenuous if you know you don’t share the same beliefs.

Here are some things you might say to a fellow believer after losing their father.

  1. Even though we will all miss your dad, I am happy that he and your mom are together again.
  2. Praying for peace as you learn to navigate your life without Michael. 
  3. “And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:17
  4. “This is what I have learned: Within the sorrow, there is grace. When we come close to those things that break us down, we touch those things that also break us open.” - Wayne Muller
  5. I know this is hard, but I hope you find some comfort knowing that your dad is rejoicing with the angels in Heaven right now.
  6. May God’s infinite love and healing be with you in this time of sorrow. You are in our prayers now and always.
  7. Praying that Heavenly Father’s Spirit will be with you as you grieve.
  8. May our Lord bring you comfort during this time of unimaginable sorrow. We are praying for your entire family.
  9. We will never forget your dad’s gentle spirit. May God give him eternal rest and you and your family the strength and encouragement you need to get through this difficult time.
  10. We hope you feel God’s healing and comforting presence as you learn to live without your dad. 
  11. “It is the will of God and Nature that these mortal bodies be laid aside, when the soul is to enter into real life; ’tis rather an embryo state, a preparation for living; a man is not completely born until he be dead: Why then should we grieve that a new child is born among the immortals?” ~Benjamin Franklin
  12. “Every evening I turn my worries over to God. He’s going to be up all night anyway.” ~Mary C. Crowley
  13. “I can assure you that those who have already passed have not only made it to the Other Side, but are in a state of bliss.” - Sylvia Browne
  14. “Tears are God’s gift to us. Our holy water. They heal us as they flow.” ~Rita Schiano
  15. “He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.” – Revelation 21:4
  16. “The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.” – Psalm 34:18
  17. “Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” – Isaiah 41:10
  18. “For it is you who light my lamp; the LORD my God lightens my darkness.” – Psalms 18:28   
  19. “O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?” The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” – 1Corinthians 15:55-57 
  20. “But we do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, about those who are asleep, that you may not grieve as others do who have no hope. For since we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so, through Jesus, God will bring with him those who have fallen asleep.” – 1Thessalonians 4:13 

Write the Perfect Card for Your Loved One

It’s difficult to convey how you feel in the wake of a father’s death and coming up with the right words can feel overwhelming. No matter how much time you spend on a card, it will never be perfect. There aren’t enough words to heal this sort of loss overnight. Providing support and empathy is all you can do. Put as much love, thought, and care into your message as you can and that will make all the difference. 

The suggestions we’ve given are just a launchpad, though. Feel free to tweak each of them — add unique memories for a heartwarming touch and a dash of extra comfort.

Have other suggestions to share? Let us know your ideas on to express your condolences or the best ways to say "I'm sorry." Still need more ideas? Head over to our list of the best sympathy gift ideas for more.

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