Funeral & Trial of John Smith 3/1/16


John Smith was not only an incredible man of God, an amazing father, and an incredible carpenter; he was also an outstanding husband. John touched the lives of many people in his short 24 years on Earth, but I can assure you he had the greatest impact on me and our daughter. John showed us both how to love unconditionally, introduced us the word of God, and made sure that we knew he loved us more than wither one of could possibly imagine. Kyla and I talk about John constantly throughout each passing day; she shares with me her fondest memories of her and her daddy (some I didn’t even know about). It is an incredible feeling knowing that he made such a difference in such a short time. I can not understand why such a tragic situation had to unfold in John’s life, but what I do is that God is a mighty God and he has a plan for every person in this room. I find myself questioning why this had to happen, and I want to be angry with John’s killer. However, I know that is not at what he would have wanted. He would have told me to find comfort in the fact that he is now in a much better place, and he would tell me to pray. He would say, pray hard; pray really hard because the man that did this will never get to experience the Heaven that I am in now, and that is the saddest situation of all. John Smith was in incredible husband, father, and preacher; he was amazing at spreading the word of God and introducing people to the Bible. If John could speak to the people here today he would tell us all to wipe our tears and let go of the sadness; but he would also tell those of you that have not found your Lord Jesus Christ yet that you never know when you will run out of time. He would want you all to understand that you never know when your time will end, and it will forever be the greatest tragedy to not live your eternal life in Heaven.

ANALYSIS: I wrote the eulogy to strictly appeal to the emotions. Funerals in my culture are never happen, that are a moment to grieve. However, they are also sometimes also used to convince other people to change their life. Many preachers that have delivered eulogies have also seized the opportunity to deliver a message. I decided to follow the crowd and do the same thing. I appealed to the emotional side, but I also included some logic. At the beginning I included facts about the person that would make what was going to follow seem even more sad. Also, I included character qualities that make the person out to look as if they were the model human being. These are strategies that are used to insure that everyone there is both touch, and feels terrible about what happened.  I included nothing bad about “John” because it was not the goal to make people see the real person he was; it was the goal to create an emotional connection that would make everyone very sad that he was gone.



John Smith was a husband, father, and a wonderful asset to his community. John preached at South Side Baptist Church, and had coached youth baseball for two years. John and his wife had just welcomed there new baby girl into the family just three weeks before his murder. How could one person possibly take a life from a man that gave so much to others? John loved his wife and daughter to the end of the Earth, and now they have to live the rest of their life without him because of this man (points to suspect). I know almost each and every one of you are parents, could you imagine your child losing you at the hands of another human being. Could you imagine them waking up every day knowing you were stabbed to death? How about this, could you imagine what it would be like to lose your child to a murder? Because John was a son as well. It is an awful feeling to have to face the facts every single day when his wife, parents, grandparents, friends, and DAUGHTER wake up. Every day when they wake up they are going to have to look themselves in the mirror and face reality: John was murdered; stabbed to death my another man. There is nothing any of us can do to change that, I wish we could, but we can’t. That reality is always going to be the reality they face. But please, you 12 people can make a difference in their lives. You can. You can take the man that committed this awful crime off of the streets. Please don’t make them go through having to face that the man that murdered their love one is still walking the streets. Don’t do that to this people, they have gone through enough. You 12 people need to make the difference that you are being given the opportunity to make and take this man off of the streets!



I wrote the closing arguments to appeal to both the emotions and the logic. I used epideictic rhetoric to blame the other man for everything. I painted John Smith to be a perfect human and made it appear that there was absolutely no reason behind his murder. I said things like “I know you all are parents” to engage the emotional connection the jury had to the fact that John was both a parent and a child to someone. Also, I used the word murder over and over and over again. I never said kill or deceased. I used a harsh word like murder because it was harder it would hit a nerve in the jury that the word kill would not. Finally, I closed the argument by stating that the jury needed to do their part. I used the tactic of guilt to try and get them to do as a I wanted them to do. I wanted to make them believe that if they didn’t do as they should (find the man guilty) then they were going to make these people suffer even more; and they just couldn’t do that.



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