Obituary For Man Who Died of COVID-19 Is Going Viral for Its Brutal Honesty
When someone dies and a friend or family member is tasked with writing the obituary, they usually write it in a certain way. They usually go through a brief history of the person’s life, pointing out significant things that happened or important accomplishments. They also usually list survivors such as children and grandchildren.
When Marvin J. Farr died of COVID-19, his family did not write a typical obituary. As they grieve the loss of their father, they also chose to reflect on the cause of his death and the unfortunate circumstances in his life.
The obituary starts by explaining the bleak way Farr spent his final days.
“Dr. Marvin James Farr, 81, of Scott City, Kan., passed away Dec. 1, 2020, in isolation at Park Lane Nursing Home.”
Then, the obituary shares a statistic, not about Farr’s life but about COVID-19.
“He was preceded in death by more than 260,000 Americans infected with covid-19.”
Next, the obituary circles back to explain in detail how sad and scary Farr’s final days must have been.
“He died in a room not his own, being cared for by people dressed in confusing and frightening ways. He died with covid-19, and his final days were harder, scarier and lonelier than necessary. He was not surrounded by friends and family.”
As the obituary continues, it explains the hardships Farr had to face during his life, such as being born after the Great Depression and right before World War 2. It also explains how Farr lived his life caring about others and contrasts this with how people failed him in the end.
“As a young man he debated between studying mortuary or veterinary science. He chose life over death. The science that guided his professional life has been disparaged and abandoned by so many of the same people who depended on his knowledge to care for their animals and to raise their food.”
In the end, the obituary mentions that there has not been a memorial service scheduled due to COVID-19.
The obituary was posted on Twitter, and it has gone viral due to the blunt way it explains COVID-19. There are mixed feeling about the obituary. Some people seem to feel that it’s a shame that the family used an obituary to state their opinions about COVID-19 instead of simply honoring their father’s life. Others feel that the family did the right thing by using the obituary as an opportunity to warn others.
Horrible, but I’m glad that’s not the entirety of the obituary. Regardless of the illness that finally ends your life, it would be a shame for your family to use your death as an opportunity to take a shot at unworthy people not related to your life’s accomplishments
— The Real JarbD (@JarbD) December 8, 2020
I’ve said the same to my family. I’m a teacher forced into teaching in-person 5 days a week in a state that’s currently #1 in the nation for per capita new COVID cases & our reckless governor refuses to close the schools. Please politicize my death.
— above & beyond in Providence (@in_providence) December 8, 2020
What do you think of this obituary? Do you think it was important to warn others, or do you think the family should have written a more traditional obituary to honor their father?