TheGov From United States of America, joined Apr 2003, 420 posts, RR: 3
Reply 4, posted (5 years 9 months 6 days ago) and read 3154 times:
As someone in the funeral business, I prefer to use the phrase "pass away" versus "die". "Die" to me tends to be a little harsh. In my business, while we don't tend to tiptoe around death, we do attempt to make it a little more palatable, so to speak. I mean, people don't tend to visit a funeral home for grins and giggles, so we want to make their experience (as bad as it is) as comforting and reassuring as possible. So if the term "pass away" makes it a little easier to stomach, then I'm okay with it. Just as an aside, most hospitals, when they call us to come pick someone us, use the word "expired". Milk and cheese expire - not people.
I'm going out on a limb here... Maybe it has to do with the circumstances. My sister died due a self inflicted gunshot wound. It is/was violent and extremely traumatic. There was nothing peaceful about the event. I normally use the word "passed" when the end of a person's life was expected.
When you are doing stuff that nobody has done before, there is no manual – Kevin McCloud (Grand Designs)
LTU932 From Germany, joined Jan 2006, 13929 posts, RR: 49
Reply 7, posted (5 years 9 months 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 2981 times:
Must be something with the English speaking world though. In Germany, we mostly say "dead" and don't use any other word to avoid "dead", obviously in German. We try to avoid being "PC" about it, because it seems to me that avoiding the word "dead" in English is because otherwise, it's simply not "politically correct", even if "dead" is spot on accurate. That's just me speculating though.
SmithAir747 From Canada, joined Jan 2004, 1659 posts, RR: 27
Reply 9, posted (5 years 9 months 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 2886 times:
The funeral business itself, at least here in the USA, uses so many euphemisms:
"Casket" is the word we use for what really is a coffin; the word "casket" comes from a French word describing a box for jewelry or other valuable items. Our caskets are fancy, frilly metallic or wood boxes (usually rectangular, with domed lids) costing as much as a used car (or in the case of Batesville Casket Company's "Promethean" gold-plated bronze casket, which Michael Jackson now lies in; this costs as much as a new US-made car).
In the UK and Europe, I have seen simpler, wooden coffins with anthropoidal or hexagonal shapes, which are more elegant in their simplicity. I would really rather be buried in a simple, Anglo/Irish-style wooden coffin (see Remeire, http://www.remeire.com ) or one like the Trappist monks at New Melleray Abbey in Iowa build (Trappist Caskets, http://www.trappistcaskets.com ).
In a US funeral home, the embalming room is called the "preparation room"; the casket (I mean coffin) showroom is called the "selection room" where coffins are arrayed like luxury cars in a showroom; the room where the wake is held is called a "chapel"...the list goes on.
Even the US hearse has been called often a "funeral coach"!
Do funeral homes in Europe have similar euphemisms or practices?
I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made... (Psalm 139:14)
FlyMIA From United States of America, joined Jun 2001, 7364 posts, RR: 6
Reply 11, posted (5 years 9 months 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 2856 times:
Just listen to the news, when something unexpected happened to someone or a violent death they say XXX died today, from gunshot etc.. But when someone who was 95 years old dies they say passed away etc.. But really I see the news using died a lot more. I think the circumstances do matter. It is just a nicer way to say it that's all.
"It was just four of us on the flight deck, trying to do our job" (Captain Al Haynes)
IAirAllie From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 13, posted (5 years 9 months 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 2837 times:
I typically say my brother died. I'm not afraid of the term or death itself it's all very natural to me. Although passed on to me indicates moving on to the next phase of existence. I don't believe death is final I think it is the start of something better.