Preserving Text Messages of a Loved One Who Has Passed Away

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Jay Walsh

Categories: iTunes, iPhone | View Comments

When a family member or loved one dies you can save their text messages to your computer for safekeeping with Decipher TextMessage.

One of the most difficult and profound things to experience in life is the death or passing of a loved one. Whether that person happens to be your mother, father, brother, sister, or a grandparent, the loss of someone close to you comes with an overwhelming range of emotions, from sadness and sorrow, to stress and confusion.

When a family member or friend dies, it can immediately feel like there are a million tasks that need to be handled. Whether these tasks include notifying family members and acquaintances of the death, or having to identify and gain access to various accounts in the loved one’s name, the amount of paperwork and miscellaneous things to oversee can be overwhelming.

During this process and while continuing to grieve, family members often realize that they want to preserve memories shared between themselves and their loved one who is now deceased. This often means printing out emails or trying to locate photos either on their computer or in the loved one’s PC or Mac. Family members also often need to figure out a way to save text messages from the loved one’s phone while the device is still active and accessible.

In the USA alone there are over 26 billion texts being sent every day. Text Messages with loved ones or family members almost always contain precious memories, including photos and videos. The need to save and preserve these memories and communications is becoming more commonplace every year, especially as we build up a rich history of text messages over time on our mobile devices with friends and family.

How to print and save text messages of a loved one who has died

Software to preserve, save, and print text messages with loved ones or family

Here at Decipher Tools offices in San Francisco and Phoenix, we often receive emails from iPhone users throughout the year inquiring about how best to preserve the text messages they exchanged with someone who has died.

The desktop program Decipher TextMessage gives anyone the ability to save text messages and iMessages of a loved one who has passed away. Accomplishing this task will also hopefully help ease some of the pain that comes with the passing of someone close to you.

Today's tutorial is for iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch users who have a Mac or Windows computer, and want to preserve text messages, either from the loved one's phone or from one's own device.

How to save and print text messages of a loved one who has died

Follow these specific steps to save and print text messages from someone who has died

  1. Make a backup of the iPhone on a computer.

  2. Open Decipher TextMessage.

  3. Pick an iPhone in the left-hand column.

  4. Select the contact that has text messages you want to save and preserve after they have died.

  5. Choose "Export" to save the text messages of the loved one who passed away.

  6. Open the saved PDF and choose print to print out the texts.


Download Decipher Text Message

When you open Decipher TextMessage on your computer you'll immediately see any existing iPhone backups in the left-hand column of the program. If the iPhone or iPad that from which you want to access text messages is not appearing in the program, you would need to make a backup of that phone on your computer.

Here is how Decipher TextMessage displays all the text messages from the loved one or family member whose text messages you want to save and preserve.

Select a contact whose text messages you want to save after they have passed away or died.

Select "Export" and then pick the "Current Conversation PDF" option in the menu. You can now copy and save all your iPhone text messages with that family member or loved one to your computer.

Select "Export" and pick "Current Conversation PDF" to save text messages from a loved one who has died.

After exporting text messages, many people like to also print out the saved messages for safekeeping and archiving. Exported messages will also contain any photos or video attachments that were part of the conversations with your loved one. Here's what the saved PDF of the text messages looks like:

This is what a PDF of text messages looks liked when saved to your comptuer.

When you print out your exported text messages, the messages will be displayed in iOS “chat-bubble” format just as they appear on your iPhone or iPad. You can then save the messages in PDF format which will enable you to email or share the exported text conversations to other family members or friends.

Your saved messages with any loved one or family member will remain in Decipher TextMessage on your computer ongoing and only you have access to your data. All your family's text message history, photos, and videos are private on your PC or Mac computer.

Pro Tip: Even if your loved one's passing was not a recent occurrence, text messages are often still accessible years later from any previous iPhone backups that are on a family member's computer. In order to save the messages you would access either to the iPhone or to the computer where your loved one backed up their iOS device.

You can run Decipher TextMessage on any Windows or Mac computer and the program will automatically read in any existing iPhone backups on the computer. This is a great way to see if your loved one or family member has legacy text messages and photos/video attachments on their PC or Mac.

Video Instructions - Save and print text messages of someone who has died

Our helpful video is a convenient way to follow along with each of the steps required to print and save text messages from any loved one or family member that has passed away.

Moving Forward And Preserving Memories

The death of a parent, partner, sibling, or other loved one is one of the most profound things anyone will experience.

If you want to ensure that your text messages with your mother, father, grandparents, or anyone on close to you are preserved for you and your family, it only takes a few minutes out of your day to transfer the messages to your desktop or laptop computer.

By archiving the messages off of the device, either to your computer or to an external hard drive or cloud storage solution, it will ensure that your personal communications and memories with your loved one will be safe and sound for years to come.

If you have any questions about accessing iPhone text messages or iMessages with someone who has passed away, feel free to contact us anytime via our Decipher Tools support page. We're a USA based company and we respond to everyone and we're always happy to help or field questions regarding your own specific iPhone text message archiving needs.