It's been said that death and taxes are the two things which can't be avoided.
Taxes are probably less inevitable, inasmuch as they are a reflection of whatever economic and legal system exists in any jurisdiction, and not every jurisdiction is the same. But death is definitely part of every person's life, and even though every person grows up with the consciousness of mortality in the back of his or her mind, that awareness seems to grow with each passing year. Reading about the death of a person who played a big role in one's life can feel like a significant marker in one's life. What starts with a trickle can grow until it seems like an avalanche. (Sorry about the mixed metaphors.)
We can't totally control how (or if) we will be remembered after we have died. How we have treated other people will definitely affect our legacies.
Our accomplishments will play a role, too. There isn't much point in achieving great things, though, if we are such jerks that people remember us not for our accomplishments but for our needlessly unpleasant personalities.
Of course, that's assuming that we're remembered at all. That's always been the purpose of obituaries, since not everyone will be remembered by a professional writer in the form of a biography.
Obituaries, however, tend to literally disappear with yesterday's news.
Thanks to the Internet, however, we now have other options, in terms of ways to insure that the obituaries of the deceased last longer than they would be likely to last if they were published in a local newspaper.
www.memory-of.com/ for example is an online obituary service I found a while back. Judging by the fact that the site doesn't seem to be online anymore, however, I'm thinking that the person who ran that site might have run out of funds with which to pay the hosting fees. That's too bad. But other sites of that nature appear to still be available. http://www.christianmemorials.com/ for example is specifically for Christians. http://www.ourlovedones.com/ I think the thing I especially liked about Memory-Of.com, though, was the fact that one could upload various files such as audio, video and more, associated with one's loved one. OurLovedOnes.com seems pretty lame in comparison with what I remember seeing at Memory-Of.com. But ChristianMemorials.com seems comparable in terms of cool features.