I suppose it depends on how much of a big deal you want to make about it. The guys on my model trains forum made an entire section for a member that recently died. http://www.the-gauge.com/forumdisplay.php?f=57 but he was also one of the most helpful and well respected members of the community. Still ranks in the top five in terms of post-count on the forum too.
How would you know they're dead? Are they that dedicated that they would have someone email you or soemthing and tell you that they died? If I were you I woulden't do anything special for the members who died. I thinkg it would change the mood of the forum (in a negative way) if you had a page on your site with it's header "Dead Members"... it's a little too morbid.
Perhaps I didn't make myself to clear, it's not a forum (although we do have one as part of the site) ; we run a social site (similar to a dating site) where bikers post profiles and it's what to do with the deceased members profile that we're having a problem with. We already have a section in the forum for tributes to deceased members but we are struggling with simply deleting the members profile, it dosn't seem right somehow.
And yes, other members let us know when another member has died, it's a close community. In the case of the member who died yesterday one of our female members was with the guy when he died.
Yea, it wasn't clear that your site is not a forum. Since you don't list it in either your profile or in your signature, of course nobody here could know. Most of the sites we discuss in this section are forums, thus the assumption yours was as well. No harm intended.
I think the "book of rememberance" is a fine idea. Deleting the profiles does seem rather harsh.
Book of remembrance is a nice idea, as for profile they should be edited in such a way that they tell the member has passed away yet shouldn’t do so blatantly and in your face kind of way.
As a biker I wouldn’t like to see my riding buddies profile being deleted after he has died. Talk with your members regarding this on one of your meets and they will be able to paint a better picture with regards to this matter then the Admins in this or any other forum.
If it's practical I would suggest contacting the next of kin and discussing it with them, after an appropriate grieving period of course. I've had a few "remembrance" profiles online and the families have really appreciated it.