Home Grief and Loss 39 Best Gone Too Soon Quotes for Premature Death

39 Best Gone Too Soon Quotes for Premature Death

by Leona Small

Updated November 2023

Dealing with death is a certainty that every person will have to face, but dealing with a premature death is particularly difficult. It’s often hard to know what to say to someone grieving a loss, and it can be even more difficult to know where to find comfort if you’re the one grieving a sudden death.

These ‘gone too soon’ quotes will hopefully serve as a reminder that no one is alone. Loss is an unfortunate, but very real, part of life. You are not alone in struggling to cope with the loss of a loved one or to know what to say to a loved one who has recently lost an important person in their life, prematurely.

gone too soon quotes feature image of two loved ones leaning on each other

Premature Death

A premature death is when death occurs before a person has a chance to live a full life. It’s oftentimes considered to be worse than a late death, because of the number of potential years that were lost. Premature, unexpected death is also sadly common. The CDC estimates that up to 40% of annual deaths are preventable, but that doesn’t change the painful reality of loved ones who are gone too soon.

Premature death is often a difficult area to navigate due to the range of ways in which this can occur: terminal illness, illness, unintentional injury, suicide, and homicide, to name a few. So, while the grief will still be a challenging and unforgettable part of losing a loved one, the process of navigating the loss of someone gone too soon will likely be a bit different.

It is only natural for people around those close to the loved one who has passed away to wish to offer support by means of a kind deed or word. Providing comfort through sharing a gone too soon quote is often a great way to show sympathy and support. These can be used in cards and eulogies as an alternative to ‘rest in peace’, and also can be sent via a simple text message or email to show a loved one you care and are thinking about them during this difficult time.

close up of holding hands as a way to provide comfort for a dear friend that's deeply saddened after a sudden loss

39 Gone Too Soon Quotes

The following quotes can be used to find comfort after a sudden death, inked as a memorial tattoo, or written in a card for a loved one suffering from loss. There is no way around the fact that goodbyes hurt, especially when they weren’t able to be said directly to someone who is now gone too soon. So, these beautifully written words may help when you want to say something but just don’t quite know what to say.

rip messages being written on a sympathy card as a way to support a loved one after an unexpected death

“Words seem so feeble in moments like these. Life is so precious, and death such a thief. The depth of your pain I cannot comprehend, but I’ll stand alongside you in the darkness, my friend. Love is a bond that death cannot part. Gone from your arms but still held in your heart.”

– John Mark Green

You can lean on friends and family for support and strength. You are not alone.

“Grief is like the ocean; it comes in waves, ebbing and flowing. Sometimes the water is calm, and sometimes it is overwhelming. All we can do is learn to swim.”

– Vicki Harrison

Grief cannot be controlled.

“Her absence is like the sky, spread over everything.”

– C.S. Lewis

Their love is always around you. Their beautiful soul will never disappear, regardless of when life departs from their body.

“They that love beyond the world cannot be separated by it. Death cannot kill what never dies.”

– William Penn

Love is enduring, and never dies. It remains in our hearts, and a part of our life forever.

“It takes strength to make your way through grief, to grab hold of life and let it pull you forward.”

– Patti Davis

Your loved one would want to see you happy, and moving on. It may take time, but it won’t take forever dear.

“An abnormal reaction to an abnormal situation is normal behavior.”

– Viktor E. Frankl

There is no right, or wrong way to deal with grief.

“Life is tough, my darling, but so are you.”

– Stephanie Bennett-Henry

No one prepares you for just how painful goodbyes can be. However, memories live forever.

“Sometimes you will never know the value of a moment until it becomes a memory.”

– Dr. Seuss
in loving memory plaque with flowers above it to honor someone gone too soon - may they rest in peace

Let your memories comfort you. You may forever miss them, but you can work hard to keep their memory alive – till memory fades.

“At the blueness of the skies and in the warmth of summer, we remember them.”

– Sylvan Kamens & Rabbi Jack Reimer

Little things will remind you of the person. All the planning in the world won’t work in managing to avoid little reminders every now and then of your loved one. However, these little reminders can be a good way to keep their flame alive inside of you.

“Do you not know that a man is not dead while his name is still spoken?”

–  Terry Pratchett

The deceased will not be forgotten. Keep speaking of them, and treasure the memories. Allow them space in your heart forever.

“To live in hearts we leave behind is not to die.”

– Thomas Campbell

This person, this beautiful soul gone too soon, has left behind a legacy that will remain in many people’s hearts forever.

“Sometimes the best thing you can do is not think, not wonder, not imagine, not obsess. Just breathe and have faith that everything will work out for the best.”

– Unknown

Don’t focus on the “why”, it will only bring more heartache. Only god knows why some are gone too soon. Let your soul rest.

“And I will see you someday again in the clouds.”

– Unknown

Find peace in knowing that one day, you will be reunited. Until then, let yourself grieve the loss, let yourself feel the emotions. You can still live a good life while simultaneously mourning someone lost that your heart holds dear.

“Crying is a way your eyes speak when your mouth can’t explain how broken your heart is.”

– Prakhar Sahay
a woman navigating grief crying with her hands covering her face

Don’t hide your grief. It will likely take a little while for you to process the sudden death of someone gone too soon.

“A great soul serves everyone all the time. A great soul never dies. It brings us together again and again.”

– Maya Angelou

They might be physically gone, but they will live through you. You will never be alone.

“We bereaved are not alone. We belong to the largest company in all the world – the company of those who have known suffering.”

– Hellen Keller

No matter what, you are still loved.

“Grief is the price we pay for love.”

– Queen Elizabeth II

“There will never be a day where I won’t think of you and wish that you were by my side.”

– Unknown

Your memories will remain, yet you will still miss their physical presence. Find comfort in the memories, as those will live forever.

“Those who love never truly leave us. There are things that death cannot touch.”

– Jack Thorne

“May the winds of heaven blow softly and whisper in your ear how much we love and miss you and wish that you were here.”

– Unknown
light remains above mountaintops, a sign of hope in the world as the light casts its glow on yellow flowers - a moment of peace

“Those we love don’t go away, they walk beside us every day. Unseen, unheard, but always near. So loved, so missed, and held so dear.”

– Alex MacLean

Love will prevail. There is beauty in the ability to love deeply.

“Little by little we let go of loss — but never of love.”

– Unknown

“Your life is a blessing and your memory a treasure. You are loved beyond words and missed beyond measure.”

– Unknown

They will be missed, yet remembered in our hearts forever.

“How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard.”

– A.A. Milne
a community gathered in an embrace after a sudden death - may the beautiful soul gone too soon rest in peace

Saying goodbye is difficult. Goodbyes hurt, and the heart aches when life departs.

“What we have once enjoyed we can never lose; all that we deeply love becomes a part of us.”

– Helen Keller

“Death leaves a heartache no one can heal, love leaves a memory no one can steal.”

– Unknown

“God gave us memory so that we might have roses in December.”

– J.M. Barrie

Eventually, only beautiful memories will remain.

“Should you shield the valleys from the windstorms, you would never see the beauty of their canyons.”

– Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

“Make the most of your regrets; Never smother your sorrow, but tend and cherish it ’til it comes to have a separate and integral interest. To regret deeply is to live afresh.”

– Henry David Thoreau

Feel your pain until healing can take place.

“If there ever comes a day where we can’t be together, keep me in your heart. I’ll stay there forever.”

– A.A Milne

“The song is ended, but the melody lingers on.”

– Irving Berlin

“Never regret a day in your life: good days give happiness, bad days give experience, worst days give lessons, and best days give memories.”

– Unknown

Good or bad, every moment shapes who we are. Bad moments, too, can become an unforgettable part of our lives.

“Love is really the only thing we can possess, keep with us, and take with us.”

– Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

“Sometimes you have to die a little inside in order to be reborn and rise again as a stronger and wiser version of you.”

– Unknown

Even the worst experiences can inspire growth.

i miss you, written on a cloudy window - farewell words for someone deeply missed that will remain in hearts forever

“I planned to say a lot of things to you, but in the end, all I could muster was ‘I miss you.’”

– Unknown

“What was, still is.”

– Unknown

“Never Forgotten. You’ll never be forgotten that simply cannot be. As long as I am living, I’ll carry you with me. Safely tucked within my heart your light will always shine; a glowing ember never stilled, throughout the end of time. No matter what the future brings, or what may lie ahead, I know that you will walk with me along the path I tread. So rest my angel, be at peace and let your soul fly free. One day I’ll join your glorious flight for all eternity.”

– Kitty Kaja
a group of people writing farewell words after the sudden passing of a kind spirit that will remain forever in their hearts

They will never be forgotten, but live on in our hearts forever.

“All the art of living lies in a fine mingling of letting go and holding on.”

– Havelock Ellis

“Death ends a life, not a relationship.”

– Mitch Albom

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. What are some simple ways to support someone through grief and loss?

Supporting someone who is going through the sudden loss or death of a loved one can be challenging, but your presence and care can make a significant difference.

Some ideas of ways to support your loved one are to offer your presence, listen, provide practical assistance, respect their grieving process, send a sympathy card or message, attend the memorial service or funeral, offer to help with arrangements, respect their need for space, check in regularly, avoid making judgemental comments (such as “I know how you feel”), and, if they’re open to it, share resources such as books, articles, or other materials on grief and coping strategies.

2. What are ways I can honor a loved one I’ve lost?

There are many ways to honor a loved one, and we encourage you to choose the one that holds the most meaning for you. Some options include creating a memorial tribute, holding a memorial service or ceremony, planting a memorial tree or garden, lighting candles, donating to a cause or charity that was important to your loved one, keeping a memory journal, making a memory box, starting a new tradition, wearing a piece of their jewelry or clothing, creating a memorial art piece, volunteering in their name, speaking about them and sharing their story and impact they had on your life with others, reading their favorite book, and, if it’s not too painful, visiting their resting place to talk, reflect, and/or leave flowers or tokens of remembrance.

many lit candles as a way to honor those gone too soon - may they rest in peace and live on in our hearts forever

3. How do I process my grief over someone I’ve lost?

There is no ‘right’ answer here, and it’s our strong opinion that you should familiarize yourself with the options, but not force yourself into anything that doesn’t feel right or comfortable for you as a unique individual.

However, some common ways to process grief over the loss of someone too soon include allowing yourself time and space to grieve, seeking support from family, friends, or a support group, considering professional help such as grief counseling or therapy, establishing a daily routine to provide a sense of stability and structure in your life, finding ways to honor and commemorate the person you lost, taking care of yourself and practicing self-compassion, expressing your feelings by engaging in various forms of self-expression such as journaling or art, and trying to stay open to healing, regardless of how much time it may take.

Additional Reading

Remember that there is no set timeline for grieving, and it’s normal to experience waves of grief for a long time. Be patient with yourself and allow the healing process to unfold naturally. If you’re looking for at-home ways to support you as you move through your grieving and healing journey, the books (some with audiobook options) we’ve linked below are excellent resources that provide guidance, support, and daily sayings, tips, and ways to counsel you as you navigate the complex grieving process.

Your Grief, Your Way: A Year of Practical Guidance and Comfort After Loss
  • Forsythia, Shelby (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
Grief One Day at a Time: 365 Meditations to Help You Heal After Loss
  • Wolfelt, Dr. Alan (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
Grief Day By Day: Simple Practices and Daily Guidance for Living with Loss
  • Warner, Jan (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)

Final Thoughts

Honoring a loved one you’ve lost is a personal and individual process. Choose the methods that resonate with you and your loved one’s personality and passions. Remember that keeping their memory alive can be a healing and comforting experience as you, or a loved one, navigates their grief. Also remember that grief is complex, and what works for one person may not work for another.

If you are supporting another person through their grief, remember that your role is to be a compassionate and supportive presence during this challenging time. Be kind, loving, and gentle. Spend time with the person and allow them to process their grief in their own way. If you haven’t yet, familiarize yourself with the five stages of grief, and, most importantly, remember to give anyone going through heartbreaking loss grace.

the words 'hope always' on a board - a reminder that there is always hope for happiness again, even after something as tragic as an unexpected death of a loved one gone too soon

About the Author

Leona Small is a freelance writer and former caregiver. She has experience working with people with Alzheimer’s Disease and related dementias and has spent years working alongside both patients and caregivers in Hospice. Additionally, she’s worked as a Professional Organizer helping people and families to purge, organize, manage, and prepare for various life transitions such as moving, downsizing, and the passing of loved ones. Her passions include writing about healthy aging, innovative resources to help older adults and caregivers, and traveling.

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