Speech material: To those who couldn’t be here

Written by    Last updated: June 6, 2006

Wedding speech material for you to adapt, for when you want to say something touching about the people who can’t be with you

To absent friends (from far away)

Wedding speechmakers might want to mention close relatives and good friends who can’t be there on the day.

‘It’s wonderful to see so many of our friends and family gathered here to share Debbie and Ian’s happiness. However, as you know, Shirley and Jim were sadly unable to make it over from New Zealand to be with us today. They send their very best wishes to happy couple and I’d like to ask you to charge your glasses and drink a toast to them, and all our other absent friends. To ‐‐ absent friends!’

Absence due to illness

‘My Dad’s absolutely gutted that he can’t be with us today, but unfortunately he’s languishing in hospital even as we speak. He keeps telling us it’s his old war wound playing up, but actually that Yoga class finally did for his hip. Anyway, we’ll be at his bedside tomorrow with the video to cheer him up, but meanwhile let’s raise our glasses to him and other absent friends.’

To absent friends (deceased)

‘As you probably all know, I have the honour of speaking in place of Edward, Haley’s father, who passed away last year. All through the day, as I’ve looked around at everyone having such a great time, I’ve thought about how much Edward would have loved this wedding. Everyone who knew him will remember how much he enjoyed occasions like this ‐ music, having fun, eating, laughing, having a drink… or two ‐‐ that was the Ed we all loved. And of course, he would have been awfully proud and awfully happy to be giving away his beloved daughter. We all miss his presence greatly, but we know that he would have wanted everyone here to have a wonderful time. That’s what we intend to do, but first, let’s raise our glasses and drink a toast to Edward… ladies and gentlemen, to Edward, the father and friend we’ll never forget.’

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