READ: Special Occasion Speeches
The different types of tribute speeches include eulogies, anniversary addresses, and dedicatory speeches. If you are delivering a eulogy, make sure your content is appropriate for the occasion. When speaking at a funeral, you must be very respectful. The purpose of a eulogy is to summarize the important events and contributions in a person’s life. As you collect your background material and write your speech, you should keep the facts in chronological order and be as thorough as possible.
If you are skipping from birth to a marriage, you are leaving out a lot of time in between, where important events undoubtedly took place. If the person’s death was tragic, it is very important that you express grief and reverence for that individual and that there is a cadence in your voice. Your style of presentation is nearly as important as your content in showing the family of the deceased your respect for that loved one. If the person who has just passed away was eighty-seven and had lived a full life, then there is more room for a light-hearted delivery. But always stay within the guidelines of respect. Use tact and restraint.
The astronauts on the space shuttle Challenger were about excellence instead of perfection. They were dedicated, spontaneous, flexible, and willing to take any opportunity to make the difference in the space program, even though they faced many dangers and ultimately were involved in our nation’s worst space disaster. I know you will enjoy reading a tribute to the Challenger astronauts delivered by Ronald Reagan.