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Cutting obituary for B.C. man thanks karma for 'doing what she does best'

Few obituaries begin with the words, "I am pleased to announce" – but Amanda Denis believes in blunt honesty.

When the Ontario resident's estranged father died halfway across the country in B.C.'s Okanagan, Denis felt compelled to share a few choice remarks about the man she describes as a "miserable human."

The obituary that resulted – which Denis ultimately had to publish on her own, after being rejected by her father's funeral home – clearly struck a nerve, getting shared thousands of times on social media.

"After suffering multiple strokes, one thankfully leaving him unable to speak, the abusive, narcissistic absentee father/husband/brother/son finally kicked the bucket," it reads.

"Because he treated people with disdain, there will be no service."

While most families opt to focus obituaries on positive biographical details, even for complicated people with whom they suffered through strained relationships, Denis felt sharing her truth was more important than painting a rosy picture of her father's legacy.

"I've never been one to mince words, I've always been an honest straight-shooter," Denis told CTV News. "So when I found out about my father's passing, I said, 'I guess I have to write an obituary' – and that's what came out."

Denis said some of her earliest memories involve emotional and physical abuse at the hands of her father. As an adult, she ultimately made the difficult decision to cut ties with him entirely.

"I didn't want him to hurt anyone that I loved anymore, including myself," she said.

"There's just some people who aren't meant to be parents."

Perhaps the most positive part of her obituary was the genuine appreciation Denis expressed for the staff at Penticton Regional Hospital and the Sunshine Ridge seniors' home who cared for her father.

She followed that up by thanking karma – "for doing what she does best."

After posting the obituary on her TikTok account, Denis said she received a flood of messages, many from complete strangers thanking her for publicly sharing the kinds of deeply personal feelings they harbour about their own troubled relationships.

Her hope is to see more people speaking out about aspects of their lives that rarely make it onto Facebook or Instagram posts.

"We see the glorified lives that we all apparently live, but we don't get to see this stuff – the stuff that matters, the stuff that hurts us, and the stuff that turns us into the people who we are today," she said.

And while speaking ill of the dead is generally discouraged to prevent causing harm to their surviving loved ones, Denis said her extended family understands "what kind of man he really was," and no one has expressed any objections to her obituary.

She decided to end with a call, in lieu of flowers or donations, for kindness: "Spread light and love where you can, and do with your life what this man clearly lacked the ability to do." Top Stories

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