It is neither necessary nor proper to mention specifically the deceased person in your letter, because the sad event is still fresh in the mind of the reader. You should not attract his/her attention to the tragedy.
At the outset express grief on getting the news:
1. We are shocked to learn about the sorrow that has come upon you so untimely.
2. I don’t know how to express my grief at this tragedy in your family.
3. The sad news completely stunned me/us.
4. I cannot tell you how grief-stricken I am to learn about your brother’s sudden demise.
5. I can well imagine your condition on this sudden tragedy.
6. I have just heard the sad news and don’t know how to console you.
7. Today Ashok brought the news of your brother’s death and it left us speechless.
8. It was a great shock to hear about your father’s tragic death.
9. I could hardly believe the news about your mother’s death when I picked up the paper today.
10. The heart-breaking news came as a stunning blow.
11. What is more shocking is the fact that it was nothing but an accident.
12. The other day only I met him and he appeared so cheerful and healthy.
13. The other day when we met him who knew he would be with us only for a few days.
14. I know what dreams you had for him.
15. Although your revered father was of ripe age, I could never think that his end was so near.
16. I simply can’t imagine the grief of your dear mother.
17. He/she was always kind to me. Whenever I went to your place, he/she treated me like his/ her own son/ daughter.
18. With such a good academic career/ job, he was on to a bright start. But who knew?
19. I still remember very vividly the long meetings I have had with her.
20. She was the darling of everybody who knew her.
21. All his friends are quite stunned by this sad news.
22. I know how deeply attached you were to Rajan and what a wonderful brother he had been to you.
23. Your sister was an adorable girl.
24. It was a real shock to hear about the tragedy that has occurred in your life.
25. We were/ I am shocked to learn about the untimely passing away of your……….
26. The sad news came as a sudden shock to all of us here.
27. We were spell-bound to learn about the sad news.
28. It left us deeply pained to learn about the tragedy that occurred in your life.
Extend all possible help (only in case of family/friend – not in business circle)
29. I hope I can be of some help to you in this hour of distress.
30. Please don’t hesitate to tell me if I can do anything for you.
31. Why don’t you come here for some time? The change might help you.
32. My mother sincerely wants you to come here to stay with us.
33. I will very soon drop in at your place.
34. May I offer you some financial help that you might need on this occasion?
35. We have to bow/ are helpless before the fate.
36. I/we pray to God to give you enough strength to face/withstand this irreparable loss.
37. Let God give you enough inner strength to stand this loss.
38. Please be courageous enough for the sake of others in your family, though your sorrow is inconsolable.
39. If I/we can be of any type of help to you please do not hesitate to tell us.
Repeat your sympathies at the close of letter:
40. May the departed soul rest in peace.
41. You must put up a courageous front for the sake of your children.
42. My deepest sympathy in your bereavement.
43. Please don’t give in to this sorrow. All of us have to suffer such shocks at one time or the other.
44. Time alone will heal your wounds.
45. The void that the sad demise of your dear husband/ wife has created in your life can never be filled.
46. Heart-felt condolences.
47. Please accept our heart-felt condolences.
We are shocked to learn about the sorrow that has come upon you so ultimately. What is more shocking is the fact that it was nothing but an accident. Time alone will heal your wounds. Our heart-felt condolence.