Dogs really are man’s best friend. They’re more than just pets, they can be our best friends and most loyal companions… and when they pass away, it can be devastating.
We all grieve for our late pets in different ways, but one woman decided her beloved dog deserved a tribute normally reserved for humans: a full obituary in the newspaper.
Sallie Gregory-Hammett, a 30-year-old woman from Greenville, South Carolina, was the proud owner of a golden retriever named Charlie.
“I know it’s cliché but he was my best friend,” Sallie told HuffPost. “He went with me everywhere… He was just a constant source of comfort and companionship and joy. Everyone that knew me knew Charlie and knew how much I loved him.”
Sadly, Charlie passed away on September 13, after a five-month battle with lymphoma. He was seven years old.
The loss of her best friend devastated Sallie, who sought a way to deal with her grief and express her love for her late dog.
So she decided to write him an obituary.
“I’ve always loved writing, and when Charlie passed it was just so overwhelming that I needed to do something cathartic,” Sallie said.
The beautiful tribute to Charlie, first printed in the newspaper, has gone viral on Twitter, where it has been breaking hearts all over the internet.
The obituary paints a picture of Charlie’s joyous life, describing his favorite activities:
Charlie’s favorite activities were walking, stick collecting, swimming, smiling, and snoozing. If we’re being honest, Charlie loved everything life had to offer (except stairs. He hated stairs). Charlie loved the beach, car tides, bananas, and socks. Charlie always loved going to his Grandma and Grandpa’s house, where he could get treats, chase squirrels, and pee everywhere cousin Captain peed. Charlie went tailgating, camping, hiking, and fishing. He lived the very best life.
More than anything else, Charlie loved his mom. He was always there to greet her with some kisses and was best at unconditional love. He taught everyone he met about loving people, and always seeing the good in everyone.
The obituary explains how Charlie passed away after bravely battling lymphoma for months, but died peacefully after spending his final days happily playing on the beach.
The most heartbreaking part of the obituary is how Sallie describes the lingering impact Charlie will always have in her life—an experience any dog owner who lost a pet can relate to:
We will think of him every time we open the peanut butter. We will miss him every time we see a sock on the floor or pass a stick on a walk. We will carry him with us everywhere. He will be forever missed and forever remembered, but he left behind his fierce love, which never wavered.
The tribute concludes “In lieu of flowers, the family asks that you give all your pups some extra love in honor of Charlie.”
We will—after reading a heartbreaking tribute like this, it really makes you appreciate your pets even more while they’re still around.
Rest in peace, Charlie. It’s clear you brought a lot of joy into the world during your time here. Share this beautiful story!