2016 04 15 LHR PIC Ron HarderB

Host Ron Harder

 Your Host Ron Harder , along with his wife, Chris, and their nephew and business partner, Jim Beeding, opened Heritage Oaks Memorial Chapel in 2008 following the tragic death of their youngest son Zachary Harder.  Having personally experienced the devastating pain of the loss of a child, as well as other family members and close friends, allows them to serve families with compassion and a deep understanding of the grieving process.  Endeavoring to understand the journey of grief has given them a compelling desire to help others transition from “Mourning to Joy.”

Hope, Healing & Help is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.  Click on the DONATE button to donate by PayPal or Credit Card.  Checks payable to “Hope, Healing & Help” can be mailed to 6920 Destiny Drive, Rocklin, CA 95678.

Guests are listed in alphabetical order by last name. Click on each letter to go directly to that section of this page. 


A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O – P – Q R S T U V W X – Y – Z

– A –

Ahern Dennis 2016 05 02 A

Dennis Ahern, D.Min.

Ahern, Dennis, D.Min.
Loss vs Bereavement
Part 1:  Identifying the Emotions of Grief
(General Grief)

Part 2: Principles for Grief Recovery
(General Grief)

Dr. Dennis Ahern serves as WorldVenture’s Pastoral Counselor, providing care for those serving in distant, difficult, and sometimes dangerous locations.  Dennis serves missionaries and churches by shepherding ministry families during stressful times, fostering the spiritual health necessary for the growth of both worker and work.  Since 1992, Dennis has focused a portion of his ministry serving those impacted by trauma.  His mission statement includes “the development of trusted relationships during times of crisis, speaking words of grace, hope, and truth in submission to God’s redemptive purposes.”

Dr. Ahern’s doctoral thesis was on the subject of dealing with betrayal.  He has spoken extensively on Bereavement vs. Loss.  As a conference speaker, he presents on topics such as mentoring, partnering with God to raise children overseas, maintaining moral purity overseas, and grieving and healing the wounds of betrayal.  He also serves as a volunteer clergy with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.

Dennis and his wife Denise have been married for almost 40 years.  They are the parents of four children, all raised in Asia, and are also grandparents to seven granddaughters.

Amaro Ruth 2013 06 15

Ruth Amaro, Grandparent’s Grief

Amaro, Ruth
Grief Through the Eyes of a Grandparent
(Grandparent Grief, Child Loss)

Ruth Amaro lives in Sacramento, California, with her husband.  She is a mother of four children, John, Joseph, Gavino & Rachel.  She also has three grandchildren, Anthony, Isabella (Bella) and Joseph Jr.  In February 2011, just two days  after Joseph’s arrival from Iraq for a tw0-week leave, Ruth received the shocking call that her 16 month old granddaughter was dead.  This has been a painful journey for Ruth as she not only dealt with her own pain of losing her precious little Bella, but she also had to watch her son grief the loss of his little daughter.

In 2012, Ruth’s family was blessed with the arrival of their third grandchild, Joseph Jr, who recently celebrated his first birthday.  He has been their delight and has brought tremendous healing to the family.  Ruth has presented on Grief from a Grandparent’s Perspective.

Back to Top

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

– B –

Bob Baugher

Dr. Bob Baugher, Professor of Psychology

Baugher, Dr. Bob

Understanding Men and Their Grief
(Gender grief, Dealing with Grief, Marriage & Grief)

Wet Eyes – Dry Eyes, The Story of Tears
(Dealing with Grief, Emotions of Grief)

Dealing With Guilt Part I

Dealing With Guilt Part II

Healthy and Unhealthy Grief
(Dealing with Grief)

Getting Grief Out
Notes for Getting Grief Out
(Dealing with Grief)

Bob Baugher, Ph.D. is a Psychology professor at Highline Community College, Des Moines, Washington, teaching Psychology and Death Education. Author, trainer for LivingWorks which is focused on suicide intervention, a popular and well received international speaker on grief and loss, Certified Thanatologist and Clinician with University of Washington School of Nursing Parent Bereavement Project.  Learn more…

Many of Dr. Baugher’s articles are available at OpenToHope.com.  [See ArticlesHe has authored eight books on various topics of grief.  To order, email to Bob_KBaugher@yahoo.com. Here are the titles:

A Guide for the Bereaved Survivor – by Robert Baugher & Marc Calija
Understanding Guilt during Bereavement – by Bob Baugher
Understanding Anger during Bereavement – by Bob Baugher, Carol  Hankins, & Gary Hankins
Death Turns Allie’s Family Upside Down – by Bob Baugher, Linda Wong-Garl, & Kristina J. Baugher
Coping with Traumatic Death: Homicide – by Bob Baugher & Lew Cox
After Suicide Loss: Coping with Your Grief – by Bob Baugher & Jack Jordan
The Crying Handbook – by Bob Baugher & Darcie Sims
In the Midst of Caring – by Darcie Sims & Bob Baugher

Beeman Gail & Steve 2013 02 02

Steve and Gail Beeman Christopher’s Parents

Beeman, Gail
Dealing with Suicide Loss
(Child Loss, Depression, Suicide)

Gail Beeman lives in Auburn, California.  After the suicide death of her 20 year old son, Christopher, in 2004, Gail has actively been an advocate of suicide prevention.  She and her family initiated the installation of 6 Suicide Hotline phones on the Foresthill Bridge in 2008.  Whenever a suicide occurs in the Auburn-Grass Valley area, Gail is often the first person who comes to mind as someone who can provide grief support for the family.  Gail and her husband, Steve, facilitated the Friends for Survival support group in Grass Valley for 5 years.  Gail and Steve are proud of their two daughters who have actively been involved in suicide prevention and education.  The local phone number for the Suicide Hotline is 530-885-2300; National number is 800-784-2433.

Back to Top
Bevington Kay 2013 10 19b

Kay Bevington, Rhonda’s Mom and Founder of Alive Alone

Bevington, Kay
Loss of an Only Child
(Category: Loss of Child)

Seasoned Grief
Category: General Grief)

When her only child, Rhonda, died in 1980, Kay not only grieved the loss of a child, but also the loss of her only child.  She had to face the harsh reality that she was now childless except for the memories of her beautiful daughter Rhonda.  Kay and her husband, Rodney, formed an organization called Alive Alone to help others like herself who have no surviving children. Kay and Rodney reside in Ohio, but their outreach isn’t limited to their local community.  They touch the lives of  people all over the United States by mail, email, and through participation in special events such as the annual conferences of support organizations for bereaved parents.  The opportunity to subscribe to the Alive Alone Newsletter is available on their website.  Contact Kay by email at alivalon@bright.net.


Bibbins Bill 2014 08 02

Chaplain Bill Bibbins, Law Enforcement Chaplaincy

Bibbins, Chaplain Bill
Understanding the Law Enforcement Chaplaincy
(Categories:  Dealing with Loss, Law Enforcement)

Bill Bibbins has served as a Law Enforcement Chaplain in Placer County since 1998.  He is an ordained minister and currently pastors at Oakside Church in Citrus Heights, California.  He is also a Licensed Clinical Pastoral Counselor.  Chaplain Bibbins and his wife Cheryl reside in Orangevale.  They raised 2 daughters and a son, and now have 3 teenage grandchildren.

One of the most important purposes of the Chaplaincy is the Ministry of Presence.  Chaplains supply a source of strength to law enforcement officers and their families, department personnel, and members of the community. Additionally, they are trained to serve the needs of others without religious, racial, social, or gender bias, providing care and compassion for those impacted by crisis and traumatic incidents.  Those interested in learning more about entering the Law Enforcement Chaplaincy can visit www.placerchaplains.comTo reach Chaplain Bibbins directly, call 916-599-4042.

Brown Ali 2013 04 20

Ali Brown, M.S., Placer Institute

Brown, Ali
Topic: Child & Teen Grief
Category:  Child Grief)

Ali Brown, M.S., has a multitude of experience working with grief and loss. She counsels children as young as three on the loss of a parent through death or divorce. She helps teenagers cope with loss through suicide and helps adults deal with the loss of a spouse, or cope with grief due to a chronic illness. In addition to her counseling experience, Ali has been invited as a guest to many bereavement and support groups to speak about grief and loss and its effects on mental health.

Back to Top
Brownley Margaret 2013 08 10

Margaret Brownley, Author

Brownley, Margaret
Grieving God’s Way
(Categories: Faith, Dealing with Grief)

Margaret Brownley stopped writing after her oldest son, Kevin, died following a lengthy illness.  She simply didn’t have the heart.  Never did she imagine she would write again – and certainly not a book about grief.  But God works through strengths as well as weaknesses, and He worked through Margaret’s love of words.  Three years after her son died, she sat down to write Grieving God’s Way. Margaret and her husband live in Southern California.  They are parents of 3 children and have been blessed with 6 grandchildren.  She is now back to writing fiction and is a New York Times best-selling author with more than 25 novels to her credit.  She is the author of the Rocky Creek Romance series and the Brides of Last Chance Ranch series.  Learn more about Margaret on her website www.grievinggodsway.com.


Brubaker Pam 2013 08 03Brubaker, Pam
Realistic Expectations of Grief
Category: Dealing with Grief

Pam’s experience with providing support to the bereaved was over 30 years ago as a hospice nurse.  When her church wanted to start a grief support group, they thought she would be the perfect facilitator…and she has been doing a wonderful job facilitating a series called Grief Care.  Currently this series is available locally at Bayside Church in Granite Bay, California (near Roseville).  This 8 week grief educational series runs three times a year, in January, April and September.  She considers coming alongside people who have experienced profound loss a privilege and responsibility as she helps them understand the grieving process so they can move forward after their loss. To register to attend GriefCare, you can call Pam at 916-300-8776 or email her at PamBrubaker@comcast.netCLICK HERE for an overview of GriefCare.

Pam resides in Roseville, California, with her husband Larry.  They have a daughter and a son, both in church ministry, and they adore their four darling grandchildren.  She takes every opportunity to share her faith in the Lord Jesus.  Pam’s significant losses have been her father in 2003 years ago, and her mother in 2013.  She knows firsthand the gentle hand of her Lord and Savior who is the comforter and healer of broken hearts.

Back to Top

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

– C –

Carey Cliff & April 2014 06 07BCarey, Cliff & April
Coping with the Loss of a Baby
Category: Child Loss

Cliff and April Carey have been married 10 years and are parents to Peter, Elyse, Titus and Audrey.  They live in Fair Oaks, California, where Cliff is the Pastor of Student Ministries at Sunrise Community Church and April is a stay-at-home mom.  In February 2010, at the age of 10 ½ months, their second child Elyse passed away due to a hidden strep infection that got into her bloodstream. Their journey through grief has taken many turns, including how to grieve and remember their daughter in a real and healthy way, while not allowing this loss to become their identity. They have battled the challenges of maintaining and growing their marriage, while working to raise their other children in a healthy environment. They have been blessed by many close friends that have been willing to walk the dark road of this journey with them, and have a heart for helping people to be better equipped to walk with their grieving friends and families.

In the days, weeks and months following their loss, Cliff documented much of the journey on his blog at http://blog.cliffordcarey.com. Cliff has a heart for ministering to dads that are walking this difficult road and can be reached at cliffcarey@gmail.com.

Mitch CarmodyCarmody, Mitch
Dealing with Grief Related Stress
(Category:  Dealing with Grief)

Proactive Grieving
(Category: Dealing with Grief)

Grief In The Hundred Acre Wood – Grief According to Pooh Bear
An except from “Proactive Grieving.”

Mitch Carmody’s 9-year old son, Kelly, died in 1987 from cancer. Mitch has also lost his twin sister and various other family members. Knowing that grief can be lonely and stressful, Mitch has given his life to serving the bereaved as an inspirational speaker, artist and author.  His book, “Letters to My Son, Turning a Loss into a Legacy,” is available through his website, www.heartlightstudios.com.

Mitch is a sought after speaker for his popular seminars on “Pro-Active Grieving,” “Stress Management in Grief Through Somatic Integration,” “The Many Faces of Grief,” and “Whispers of Love.”  He also teams up with Alan Pedersen of Angels Across the USA for “A Day with Mitch and Alan.” Mitch resides in rural Minnesota with his wife, Barb.  He enjoys riding  his horses, gardening, writing, helping others, giving blood monthly and creating works of art. He is the one in his community who people turn to when they have a loss and need grief support from a kind, compassionate person.

Carthen Carlene 2016 07 16 HeadshotCarthen, Charlene
A Widow’s Journey Part 1
(Category: Loss of Spouse)

On September 25, 2013, Charlene Carthen’s day began as usual.  She saw her husband, Bishop Shurwood Carthen, off to work as usual.  Later in the day, however, she received word that her husband had collapsed during a meeting and she must immediately go to the hospital.  There she was told that her husband had suffered a massive heart attack and was unable to be revived.  Charlene’s life was changed that day.

During the weeks and months to come, she transitioned from being the wife of a prominent pastor in Sacramento, to the life of a widow who must now seek new areas of ministry as well as employment.  During her interview on Hope, Healing and Help, Charlene shares about things she has learned during her journey since her husband’s death.  She also shares about the church’s involvement in caring for her as their pastor’s widow.  [Read More…]

Back to Top

Catchings-Shader Daisy 2014 05 03 PhotoCatchings-Shader, Daisy
Author and Founder of Umbrella Ministries

Brokenness Turned Into Blessing
(Loss of Child)

Strength for the Journey
(General Grief, Faith)

“See you in the morning!”  Those were the last words Daisy heard her son Danny say.  The next morning they discovered he had died during the night of a massive heart attack.  Following her son’s death when she could not sleep during the night, she would write letters to her son.  In 1996, her letters were compiled into a book titled,  Under God’s Umbrella.  This book has been a blessing to countless bereaved moms.

Daisy is the founder and Director of Umbrella Ministries, an outreach that encourages mothers who have lost a child and features conferences for bereaved mothers.  This outreach is now nationwide as well as global, sponsoring conferences in New Jersey, Texas, Montana, Uganda and Liberia with many new Umbrella Ministries chapters springing up across our nation.

Daisy has been honored in recognition for 25 years of Christian Ministry as an Area and Regional Representative for Stonecroft Ministries, Christian Woman’s Club Chairman and Bible teacher. She is an inspirational and motivational speaker, author, and member of Christian Writer’s Guild. She currently serves on the Board of Woman’s Ministries at Southwest Community Church in Indian Wells, CA.

CLICK HERE for information about the Spring 2015 West Coast Conference.

Chesson Ben 2015 01 03Chesson, Ben
AMF Grief Support Groups for College Students
(College Students, Young Adult Grief)

Ben Chesson is a co-founder of National Students of AMF and presently serves as the Chair of its Board of Directors. in 2005, Ben helped to establish the second chapter of Students of AMF while a student at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Ben then began transforming the college student support network into a national, 501(c)3 tax-exempt nonprofit organization through the support of a Kaufman Foundation research grant. Since being elected to Chair of the Board of Directors, Ben has focused on the business and legal aspects of the nonprofit organization as well as taking on responsibility for organizational vision and employee development.

AMF Actively Moving Forward:  There are over 200 chapters of AMF Actively Moving Forward which was formed in 2005.  Chapters have been formed on university campuses across the United States to help students cope with grief.  Click here to read more about Ben Chesson.  To learn more about Students of AMF, visit www.studentsofamf.org“AMF is a one of a kind organization that exhibits the willingness and desire of students to make a difference in the lives of their peers and the surrounding communities they are located in.” (Alex Heiberger, MHSA, Associate Dean of Administration, Georgetown University School of Nursing and Health Studies.)

Conwell Diana 2013 01 19 SMConwell, Diane Aten
How Grief Affects Relationships
Marriage & Grief)

Who Am I Now? Part 1 – Common Emotions of Widows & Widowers
Loss of Spouse)

Who Am I Now? Part 2 – Things to Consider
Finding out who you are as a single person.  Grieving after the loss of a spouse.  R
(Loss of Spouse)

Life After Widowhood
(Loss of Spouse, Widow/Widower)

Diane Aten Conwell, M.S., LMFT is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (MFC #49952), Career Counselor (M.S.) and Life Coach (CTI Certified) in private practice.  From personal experience, Diana understands how grief, in many forms, can be heart breaking and life impacting in many areas. Diane provides a safe, welcoming environment for adults and teens where she helps her clients move through the painful emotions of grief to a place of living and doing again. She truly understands that the grief process is never easy, but it is necessary for emotional and physical health. Diana can help take you through loss to a place of hope, understanding, direction, and a new found feeling of empowerment to discover the other side of your grief…… your best life now.  www.dianaatenconwell.com.

Back to Top

Copher Marie 2014 01 01Copher, Marie
Topic:  Grief Care Provided by Hospice Organizations

Marie Copher received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Child Development with a minor in Psychology from California State University in Sacramento and obtained her Master of Arts degree in Counseling Psychology from National University. She has practiced therapy, working with children and young adults. For the past three years, she worked as a Social Worker at VITAS Innovative Hospice Care, working directly with patients and families and providing emotional support, education and resources. Marie is currently working as the Veteran’s Community Liaison for VITAS, focusing on the unique needs of veteran patients and their families as well as providing resources and educational needs to veterans, their families and providers. Marie is the proud parent of two daughters and has been happily married for almost 12 years.

Crosbie HeidiB 2015 09 26Crosbie, Heidi
Topic:  The Face of Suicide
(Suicide; Suicide Survivors)

Article:  The Face of Suicide by Heidi Crosbie

Heidi Crosbie’s brother, Beat Jenni, died in 2002 and her beloved son, Scott Crosbie, died in 2012, both by suicide. She also had a son, Christopher Crosbie, who was stillborn in 1981. After her son, Scott, died she decided she needed to seek the help of support groups and therapy to deal with her multiple losses. Friends for Survival, a suicide survivor support group, The Compassionate Friends, and The Bereaved Parents of the USA, which provide support for grieving parents, became her lifeline for the first two years after her son’s death. She currently serves on the Steering Committee of the Sacramento-Placer County Chapter of the Bereaved Parents of the USA, helping other grieving mothers navigate through their losses.

Heidi hopes she can bring more understanding and compassion to why people die by suicide, and the mental illness that so often precedes it.


Curtis Lary 2013 11 30 BCurtis, Larry
Getting Ready for  the Holidays with Thanksgiving
(Dealing with Grief, Holidays)

Larry Curtis serves on the board for the Bereavement Network Resources of Sacramento Inc., an organization that promotes effective healing from loss through education, information, referral and support.  They publish the Community Bereavement Resource Directory that provides an extensive list of grief support resources in the Sacramento, California area.

Larry is a seasoned grief support facilitator, and currently leads two support groups that meet weekly throughout the year.

Centerpoint Community Church 515 Sunrise Avenue, Roseville, California
Tuesday evenings at 6:30 pm
For Information call 916-782-3186

Bereavement Network Services of Sacramento  7700 Folsom Blvd., Sacramento
Thursday evenings at 7:30 pm.

Back to Top

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

– D –

Daggs Lisa 2014 02 15Daggs, Lisa
Topic:  Forgiveness Is A Powerful Thing
Category: Recovery from Addiction, Divorce, Forgiveness
Lisa Daggs, popular Christian Country Western vocalist, has a built-in gift for singing and was an entertainer from the young age of 3. Like many aspiring artists, Lisa launched her career by moving to Nashville in pursuit of her dream. She worked as a studio vocalist and sang in numerous showcases for local Nashville songwriters. Lisa left the Nashville scene to connect with new audiences on the West Coast. After struggling through the challenges and temptations of an entertainer’s lifestyle, Lisa worked to rediscover the inner peace she had lost. “I was full of self-will, running my own show, and believing I knew what was best for my life,” she recalls. Lisa struggled through the process of overcoming the severe consequences caused by her previous lifestyle. She turned her life over to the complete care of God, trusting Him for strength and guidance. Lisa is now a proud mother to a wonderful daughter, and a tireless ambassador for hope, renewal and God’s love.  

Lisa’s song, “Forgiveness Is A Powerful Thing,” was written from her own experience of being able to forgive her past because of knowing God’s grace and forgiveness.

Lisa can also be heard on 103.9 The Fish every Sunday at 7 PM as the host of Reality Check, Recovery Talk on the Radio, a faith based recovery program that is reaching an expanding audience with every airing. Reality Check can also be heard around the world via Lisa’s Podcast at realitycheck.libsyn.com. Lisa continues her concert ministry in venues around the globe. Her video performance with her daughter, Faith, on the recently released “The Women of Gaither Homecoming Volume 1”, is already generating fan anticipation for what lies ahead.   Great things are happening as the excitement builds for Lisa’s 8th album! Lisa is in the process of writing songs that will uplift and inspire her fans and those that will be introduced to her music for the very first time.

Davidson-Methot David 2015 04 11 Grief or DepressionDavidson-Methot, David Ph.D.
Topic: Is It Grief or Depression?
Category:  Dealing with Loss
Date:  June 20, 2015

Dr Davidson-Methot is a Psychologist serving the community of Auburn, CA, and Placer County at Sierra Hills Individual and Group TherapyCLICK HERE to learn more about Dr. Dave’s background and experience.

Back to Top

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

– E –

Erb ValerieB 2016 01 23Erb, Valerie
Title:  Healing From The Inside Out
Category:  Teen Grief Recovery
Date:  January 23, 2016

Valerie Erb was a broken teen who fell in love with Jesus over 30 years ago and has been ministering ever since then. She made a vow to God at the age of 16 to help as many lost and hurt people as possible until the day she dies. She has helped many people through her roles as a speaker, motivator, counselor, credentialed teacher, women’s ministry leader, pastor’s wife and youth leader. She is candid about the struggles she faced throughout her own childhood, teen years through adulthood, and how she overcame huge obstacles to go on to greater things. She imparts to each life she touches the hope of being restored by God from the inside out. She is currently teaching a peer helping course she wrote called Inside-Out Peer Helping (valerieerb.com) and pursuing her Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership. She is most passionate about lifting up hurting people and her biggest claim to fame is her upcoming 28th year anniversary with Frank and her two wonderful children who are 20 and 18.

Learn more about Valerie and her work with Teen Grief Recovery from the Inside Out.
Visit Roseville High School’s Peer Helping page.

Erb---Inside-Out-Peer-HelpiYOU ARE NOT ALONE
This is the message Inside Out Peer Helping Students want to send to other teens.  Their stories are told in their book,  You Are Not Alone, Inside-Out Peer Helping. Read personal stories written by students who have learned how to open up about their pain and are effectively able to reach out to others as peer helpers to encourage other students. The book is available on the Inside Out Peer Helping website.


Earickson RebeccaErickson, Rebecca
Surviving the Death of an Infant or a Miscarriage
(Infant Death & Miscarriage)

Rebecca experienced the unexpected death of her daughter due to a hypercoiled umbilical cord in 2005, and has recently been active in raising awareness and increasing understanding of perinatal loss in the greater Sacramento area.  Sharing Parents is a peer-to-peer support group which supports parents whose baby or babies have died any time from conception to early infancy.  Support is provided through monthly support meetings, an annual memorial service, a quarterly newsletter, website resources at www.sharingparents.org, and a Listening Line at 916-424-5250.  For more information, please call or email SharingParents@yahoo.com.  

Eschrich Alison2 2013 04 20Eschrich, Alison
Topic: Child & Teen Grief
(Category:  Child Grief)

Alison Eschrich, MS, has a variety of experience working with children and adolescents who deal with grief and loss. She facilitates groups for adolescent girls who deal with grief caused by death, divorce and challenging life changes. Alison has a passion for helping clients learn direct interventions that help treat Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and its symptoms.

Back to Top

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

– F –

Fajgenbaum David2 2015 01 03Fajgenbaum, David
Topic:  AMF Grief Support Groups for College Students
Category:  Student Grief, Young Adult Grief

While studying at Georgetown University, David Fajgenbaum’s mom died after suffering a terminal illness.  He promised his mother that he would start something in her honor.  That something was “Students of AMF,” a peer-led support group and service program for college students who were dealing with a loss like David had.  The organization was named after David’s mother, Anne Marie Fajgenbaum (AMF).

AMF Actively Moving Forward:  There are over 200 chapters of AMF Actively Moving Forward which was formed in 2005.  Chapters have been formed on university campuses across the United States to help students cope with grief.  Click here to read more about David Fajgenbaum.  “AMF is a one of a kind organization that exhibits the willingness and desire of students to make a difference in the lives of their peers and the surrounding communities they are located in.” (Alex Heiberger, MHSA, Associate Dean of Administration, Georgetown University School of Nursing and Health Studies.)

Farley Kelly 2013 03 02Farley, Kelly

Topic:  Grieving Dads

Kelly Farley was caught up in the rat race of life when he experienced the loss of two babies over an 18-month period. He lost his daughter, Katie, in 2004, and son, Noah, in 2006. Like many men, during these losses and the years that followed, he felt like he was the only dad that had ever experienced such a loss. Kelly spent several years trying to put his life back together.  He realized during his journey that society, for the most part, doesn’t feel comfortable with an openly grieving male.  That realization inspired him to start the Grieving Dads Project and to write his book Grieving Dads: To the Brink and Back.  Kelly has a passion for helping people “pick up the pieces” after a profound life event.  He presents workshops and works as a personal recovery coaching as a way to help people put their life back together.  Kelly commits his time to connecting with and advocating for bereaved parents. www.grievingdads.com. You can email Kelly at KellyFarley@yahoo.com.

Flores Tanya 2015 04 18 After Abortion CareFlores, Tanya
Topic:  Dealing with the Emotional Impact of Abortion
Category:  Abortion

Topic:  After-Abortion Care Part 2
Category:  Abortion

Tanya Flores understands the confusion and pain that often comes after having an abortion. After 16 years of unresolved grief, she attended an after abortion care Bible study, Living Hope, at Centerpoint Community Church in Roseville, CA. Feeling forgiven, free and living with a restored hope in life, Tanya is passionate to help other women hurting from abortion find peace and restoration. She now leads this study at Centerpoint and has become a prominent after abortion care resource for local pregnancy centers and counselors in the greater Sacramento area. Tanya also partners with Abortion Changes You, an online resource where all who are affected by abortion (including family members and friends) can start their healing process.

Living Hope After-Abortion Care offers Bible guidance into undertanding the effects of abortion and offers a pathway to God’s healing mercy and grace.  CLICK HERE to learn more.

FordBerry Lisa 2014 02 22Ford-Berry, Lisa – B.R.A.V.E. Society
Bullying – More Serious Thank You Think!
(Bullying, Suicide, Child Loss)

B.R.A.V.E. (Bullies Really Are Violating Everyone™) Society was founded from heartache and a desire to see it never happen again. Lisa Ford Berry’s son, Michael, was the victim of bullying. On his 17th birthday he decided he couldn’t handle the emotional stress of being victimized by kids in his school and tragically took his life.  B.R.A.V.E. is a non-profit grass roots corporation dedicated to creating peer abuse awareness.  “Say Something, Do Something” is an effort to encourage society to stand up to peer bullying.

Foster Misty 2013 08 17Foster, Misty
Topic:  Parents of Murdered Children
Category:  Murdered Child

Misty Foster is the Chapter Leader for the Sacramento Area Chapter of Parents Of Murdered Children (POMC). POMC is a support group for anyone whose loved one die by violence. We hold monthly support meetings, provide a telephone support network, supply information about the grief process, provide court accompaniment when possible, and a variety of other services. For more information about POMC visit www.pomc.com. Misty’s brother David was murdered in March of 1991. She became active in POMC in 2008 stating, “Finding POMC was like getting a big hug from an extended family I didn’t even know I had.”  You can contact Misty at SacPOMC@gmail.com or at 916-879-4541.

Back to Top

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

– G –

Genesse Bourdeau Gentry
Transitioning Through Grief With Poetry
(Child Loss, Dealing With Grief)

Genesse Bourdeau Gentry is the author of two books of poetry, Stars in the Deepest Night – after the Death of a Child and Catching the Light – Coming Back to Life after the Death of a Child. She lives in northern California with her husband Bill. They are the parents of Megan, who lives in Davis, CA with her husband Steve, and Lori, who died in a car accident in 1991 at the age of 21.  Following Lori’s death, Genesse and Bill joined the Marin County, California Chapter of The Compassionate Friends (TCF), a world-wide support group for families who have experienced the death of a child. She credits her involvement in TCF for getting her through the terrible years after Lori’s death and her role as group meeting facilitator as beginning her healing and opening her heart to writing.  CLICK HERE to read more about Genesse.

Genesse is a very popular workshop leader and presenter at conferences.  She can be contacted by email at gbgentry@aol.com.

Godshall Mark3 2013 06 28Godshall, Mark
When We’re Too Busy to Grieve
(Dealing with Grief; Grief Recovery)

Mark Godshall has served on the Bayside Church of Granite Bay staff for 13 years.  He oversees the Care Ministry team responsible for counseling, financial assistance, support groups including Grief Care  groups and Celebrate Recovery, career coaching, prayer, chaplains, weddings, memorial services, and baptisms. Mark and his wife Linda have been married for 36 years and have enjoyed ministry experience together in adult, youth and children’s ministries. They have four grown children who are married and who thankfully are following the Lord. They are the proud grandparents of their seven grandchildren.

Grabow Michael 2013 03 09Grabow, Michael R.
Grief Associated with Loss of Career
(Career or Job Loss)

Michael R. Grabow, Human & Organizational Performance Expert (HOPE), is owner and founder of The Essential Link Coaching and Training Network. He has over 30 years of experience in human resource development and management with global organizations. He is a certified instructor with Ken Blanchard Companies and Franklin/Covey. Michael is also a certified Business Coach with businesscoach.com and an instructor for CSU Sacramento. His passion is to see the human potential within organizations realized, released, and renewed.  Over the last 15 years, he has partnered with individuals to help them step into their giftedness. Assisting veterans to launch businesses and focusing people into their next career choices being based from their God given passion, talents and gifts. Many people have learned about the power of being themselves and the freedom to live out loud by receiving one-on-one coaching from him.  Contact Michael at mgrabow@theessentiallink.net.


Guthrie Nancy 2016 01 30Guthrie, Nancy
Topic:  Holding On To Hope
Category:  Hope, Comfort

Nancy Guthrie teaches the Bible through numerous Bible study books, at her home church, Cornerstone Presbyterian Church in Franklin, Tennessee, as well as at conferences around the country and internationally. She offers companionship and biblical insight to the grieving process through Respite Retreats that she and her husband, David, host for couples who have faced the death of a child, through the GriefShare video series, and through books such as Holding on to Hope and Hearing Jesus Speak into Your Sorrow. She is also the host of the “Help Me Teach the Bible podcast” at The Gospel Coalition.  Read Nancy’s article, How to Minister to Grieving Parents.

During the broadcast on “Holding On To Hope,” Nancy shares from her experience as a bereaved mother who had serious doubts about God’s love.  She questioned His perfect plan when she lost not just one infant, but a second due to a rare metabolic disorder. Her pain took her to the book of Job as she tried to make sense of her loss. Even though her heart was broken, however, she was able to find God’s goodness.  Nancy’s story is sure to impact your life.

Back to Top

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

– H –

Vitas Hospice

Handugan, Louie B.
The Role of Hospice in Grief Care
(Categories: Dealing With Grief, Hospice)

As part of the Care Team with Vitas Hospice, Louie Handugan provides clarification about how hospice can be involved with a family when their loved one is in the final stage of life. He helps to dispel some myths you may have heard about hospice care, such as the concern about the high cost, who’s going to pay for their services, and are we giving up on our loved one if we allow them to enter into hospice care?

Louie is currently serving as Services Manager with VITAS.  Prior to joining VITAS, Louie was an Associate Pastor at a local church in Sacramento County.  He has also worked for the American Cancer Society.  Louie holds a  Master of Divinity degree from The Mater’s Seminary in Sun Valley, California. Learn more about VITAS Hospice.

Harder Chris 2013 04 13

Chris Harder

Harder, Chris
Topic:  Successful Journeys
Category:  Dealing with Grief

Topic:  The Twelve Days After Christmas
Category:  Holidays

Topic:  A Journey of the Heart
(Support Organizations, Dealing with Grief)

Topic:  The Twelve Days After Christmas
(Dealing with Grief, Holidays)

Chris Harder has been a bereaved parent since 2006 when her youngest child, Zachary, died as a result of accidental drowning at the South Fork of the Yuba.  Since then, her life has changed drastically.  She is currently a leader in the Sacramento-South Placer County Chapter of the Bereaved Parents of the USA and considers it a privilege to help other parent move forward after the tragic loss of their child.  In 2008, along with her husband, Ron, and their partner Jim Beeding, they opened Heritage Oaks Memorial Chapel in Rocklin, California, so they can be there for people on the worst day of their life as they face having to make final arrangements for their loved one.  The Hope, Healing & Help radio program is an important service of Heritage Oaks as they seek to be an encouragement to people who are experiencing grief from life situations.

Hearl Alan2 2015 05 16

Chaplain Alan Hearl

Hearl, Alan
Topic:  A Man’s Grief After the Loss of His Wife
Category:  Loss of Spouse
Date:  Part 1
         Part 2 

Alan Hearl met his life’s partner, Karen, in a biology class while they were attending college.  According to Alan, it was love at first sight.    Karen fought a good fight against cancer, but in 2013 she went home to be with the Lord.  Alan and Karen were married for 51 years and 1 week when she died. Although Alan had come along side many individuals who had experienced losses, there’s no grief like your own, and Alan reached out to others for help.  During the program, Alan talks about his grief journey, the loneliness, how his faith was tested, sexuality, fatigue, as well as some of the activities he did that helped him move forward.

Alan is a former Navy Chaplain and currently serves in the compassion ministry at Bayside Church of Granite Bay.  He also reaches out to help others in his role as a Life Coach.  At William Jessup University in Rocklin, CA, he is an Adjunct Professor.

Hermsmeier AnitaB 2013 07 27

Anita Hermsmeier Professor of Psychology

Hermsmeier, Anita
The Study of Grief and Loss
Categories: Dealing with Grief, Grief Resources, Companioning the Bereaved)

Anita Hermsmeier is an Adjunct Professor of Psychology at William Jessup University in Rocklin, California.  Anita has a Master of Arts in Educational Counseling and certification in Adults with Learning Disabilities.

Anita says, “Teaching is one of my passions because it is through teaching that I learn, and I love knowledge.”  One of her favorite classes to teach is “Grief and Loss,” through which she has prepared many people for careers in counseling and grief care. Through this class, her students learn not only how to help others through their life losses, they also learn how to deal with their own disappointments, challenges and grief.

Back to Top
Horsley Heidi 2016 03B

Heidi Horsley

Horsley, Dr. Heidi, PsyD, LMSW, MS
The Truth About Sibling Grief
Categories: Sibling Grief, Loss of Child

When Adult Children Grieve the Loss of Their Parents
Loss of Parent, Sibling Loss, Dealing with Grief

Dr. Heidi Horsley is a licensed psychologist, social worker, an Adjunct Professor at Columbia University in New York City, and in private practice in Manhattan. An internationally known grief expert and bereaved sibling, Heidi co-hosts with her mother, the radio and television series, Grief Relief, and has written numerous articles for professional journals and co-authored several books on grief, including Real Men Do Cry and Teen Grief. She serves on the National Board of Directors for The Compassionate Friends and on the Advisory Board for the Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors of military loss (TAPS).  Together with her mother, Dr. Gloria Horsley, they founded Open to Hope Foundation.  Visit www.opentohope.com to access the many valuable resources available on their website.

Dr Gloria Horsley & Dr Heidi Horsley

Dr Gloria Horsley & Dr Heidi Horsley Open to Hope Foundation

Horsley, Dr. Gloria & Dr. Heidi
Finding Hope During the Holidays
Category:  Holidays, Dealing with Grief

Dr. Gloria Horsley and Dr. Heidi Horsley are internationally recognized grief experts mother/daughter.  They are the founders of The Open to Hope Foundation, an Internet grief site with over one million yearly visitors.  Dr. Gloria & Dr. Heidi host a monthly cable television show & a weekly internet radio show.  Dr. Gloria serves on the National Advisory Board for The Compassionate Friends.  Dr. Heidi is an adjunct professor at Columbia University and serves on the National Board of Directors for The Compassionate Friends, and is on the advisory board for the Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors of Military Loss.   Dr. Gloria & Dr. Heidi have written numerous books and articles for professional journals and are keynotes and present around the nation. Their latest books are Open to Hope, Inspirational Stories of Healing After Loss, and Open to Hope, Handling the Holidays After Loss.  Click to read Gloria Horsley’s Story.

Strong Field Project Graduation Photos Copyright Noah Berger

Matt Huckabay talks about the grief of abused women

Huckabay, Matt – The Center for Violence-Free Relationships
Topic:  Understanding the Grief of Abused Women
Category:  Abusive Relationships

Matt Huckabay  is a long-time advocate for individuals in abusive relationsihps.  He is currently the Executive Director for The Center for Violence-Free Relationships, a holistic family violence prevention and intervention organization located in Placerville, California.  Prior to joining The Center’s team, Mr. Huckabay enjoyed a successful career managing the volunteer component of The University of California Davis Medical Center’s Hospice program.   Click Here to read more about Matt’s accomplishments and involvement with organizations that stand up to domestic violence.

Hunter Hannah (2) 2016 02 06

Hannah Hunter UC Davis Children’s Hospital

Hannah Hunter
Grief Support for Young Adults
Teen and Young Adult Grief

Hannah Hunter co-facilitated the UC Davis Hospice Young Adult Bereavement Art Group, along with Don Lewis.  During the series they combined discussion and art therapy to create a safe environment for those who attended to work through their grief.  This series, held twice a year, is designed for people age 17-24 who are coping with the death of a close relative or friend.  Because this age group is often neglected in their grief, special care is taken to provide a program that will help them deal with their loss with the hope that they will move forward through life without feeling overwhelmed or distracted by their grief.

Hannah Klaus Hunter, formerly an art therapist for the UC Davis Children’s Hospital, holds a B.A. in Studio Art from the University of Iowa, an M.F.A. from California College of the Arts and a Post-Master’s Certificate in Art Therapy from UC Berkeley, has since retired. She continues to be an enthusiastic proponent of art as a means for healing.  During her career, she created a number of art therapy bereavement groups.

For additional information about the Young Adult Bereavement Art Group or to register, call Don Lewis  916.734.1139 or email to delewis@ucdavis.edu.

Back to Top

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

– I –

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

– J –

Jackson Cheryl Photo Glass2 2014 09 06

Cheryl Jackson

Jackson, Cheryl
Finding Purpose Out Of Brokenness
(Dealing with Grief)

Cheryl Jackson is a third generation glass blower and sees her art as an illustration of the transforming power of Jesus.  Her passion is to walk beside others and encourage them to find a purpose even in the smallest things which are made big when touched by the hand of God. After the death of a loved one, our hearts are broken.  We can never be “unbroken,” but we can be transformed into something even more beautiful by the hands of the master craftsman.  Cheryl uses broken glass to create beautiful hand blown glass art.  She creates memorial items for people in memory of their loved ones.  Click here to learn more about Cheryl Jackson.
Visit Cheryl’s personal Facebook page.   Visit Cheryl’s Marigold Glass Facebook page.

Jani Shadi MD 2014 01 25

Dr. Shadi Jani

Jani, Dr. Shadi MD
The Impact of Complicated Grief On The Brain
(Dealing with Grief)

After your loved one died, did you feel as if you had suffered a brain injury?  Dr. Jani has read and compiled research findings about the impact of grief on our brains.  Dr. Jani is on the Board of Directors of the B.R.A.V.E. Society (Bullies Really Are Violating Everyone), an organization dedicated to empowering children with resiliency so they will become confident and caring adults.  Through B.R.A.V.E., Dr. Jani has met many bereaved parents who are dealing with the death of their child due to suicide as a result of bullying.

View notes from Dr. Jani’s presentation on the topic of Understanding the Effect of Trauma.

Jensen Doug & BJ 2013 08 31Jensen, BJ
Topic:  Loss of a Son to Suicide
Category:  Dealing with Loss

BJ Jensen is the Director of the Love In Motion Signing Choir which is based in San Diego, California.  This amazingly talented group of people travel across the nation and internationally bringing joy and hope to people  who attend their performances.  BJ’s son died by suicide in 1995.  BJ shares how God provided a way for her to heal her grief through drama, sign language and music.  Motion combined with music can bring about some of the most healing moments for people who are grieving.  You’ll enjoy hearing BJ describe her journey and how the Love In Motion Signing Choir came into existence.

Back to Top

Johnson JeanB 2015 10 03Johnson, Jean
Topic: The Poison of Unforgiveness 
Category: Forgiveness



In 1989, two days before her daughter’s 13th birthday, Jean took Marie to the mall to celebrate her special day. She noticed two men wearing red bandanas and white with red team logo jerseys. They cunningly caught her daughter’s attention and invited her to a “special” party, gave her money for a bus ride, and made her promise to keep this a secret.  On her 13th birthday,  Marie skipped school and rode the bus back to the mall to meet the men. This “special” party turned out to be a gang initiation.

Jean shares about the unimaginable experience of having a daughter involved in a gang for many years.  Ultimately Marie was murdered by those who enslaved her.  Forgiveness did not come easy for Jean, but she realized that bitterness and anger and the resulting unforgiveness was poisoning her life and destroying her relationship with God.  It also hindered her ability to grieve her daughter’s death.

God give Jean the grace to forgive the ones who destroyed Marie’s life and murdered her. Choosing to forgive freed Jean to grieve without anything holding her back. Today, I walk in God’s freedom of forgiveness and you can, too.

Jean writes poetry and short stories to help her share her feelings.
Forgiveness Has Set Me Free – Jean’s poem about her daughter
What You Fail to Forgive Will Poison You – A story about the power of forgiveness

Johnson Karen 2014 01 11Johnson, Karen
God’s Protections and Direction

Loss of Spouse, God’s Protection, Finding New Purpose

Karen Johnson, wife of Jon Johnson, who at the time was a popular photographer with the Sacramento Kings.  Covered & Kept, the Tearing Between Two Worlds,” Karen writes about her life experiences that have allowed her to learn how God has always had His hand on her.

Karen also shares about God’s protection during the terrifying ordeal surrounding her husband’s death, as well as the new passion and purpose God has given her since Jon’s death.  Karen is the founder of Covered & Kept Ministries.

Johnston Ray 20140614BJohnston, Ray

Topic:  Hope Quotient
Date:  June 11, 2016
Category:  Dealing with Life’s Disappointments, Hope

Ray Johnston is the founder and lead pastor of bayside Church (Granite Bay, CA), Thrive Communications, and Thriving Churches International.  Ray serves on the Board of Directors at Azusa Pacific University.  A veteran of youth and adult ministries as a national speaker for Youth Specialties, Ray is also the founder of Thriving Churches International.

Pastor Ray is the founder of the Thrive Leadership Conference, hosted at Bayside Church.  This dynamic conference sells out months in advance, with more than four thousand leaders attending from across the country and around the world.  He describes Bayside Church as “a church for people who don’t like church.”  Bayside has grown into one of the largest churches in the nation, with more than twelve thousand people coming together every weekend at the Granite Bay campus and thousands more in multiple churches throughout the Sacramento region.  Ray has spoken to more than four million people over the last ten years and serves on the board of trustees at Azusa Pacific University, where he graduated.  Ray and his wife, Carol, have four children and reside in the Sacramento, California, area.

Ray is the author of HQ Hope Quotient, which focuses on building hope.  For additional resources to accompany Ray’s book, visit Unleashing Hope.

Juracka Nancy 2013 03 23Juracka, Nancy
Alcohol Addiction the Family
Addiction, Child Loss

Nancy Juracka currently serves as the Northern California Regional Director for The Compassionate Friends (TCF).  In April 2006, Nancy’s son Lance died in a horrific single car accident as a result of a mixture of alcohol and prescription drugs.  This was the culmination of 2 years of his life spiraling downhill into the darkness of addiction.  Her whole life had become consumed with trying to save Lance from this ultimate ending.  She loved him with all her heart and was watching him destroy himself.  When Lance died, the helplessness she felt, along with despair, created a sense of emptiness and failure.  She felt that her life had ended and she could not possibly go on.  As a Mother, she felt responsible and was convinced that she should have been able to save him from his addiction if only she had done “the right thing.”  Read Nancy’s complete bio…

Watch Lance Juracka’s movie, “Time’s Up
Watch an interview with Nancy on Open to Hope
Read about Lance on the Shatter Proof website
Visit Shatter the Stigma
Contact Nancy at Nancy_Juracka@yahoo.com

Back to Top

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

– K –

Kelly R Glenn July 2016 07 23R. Glenn Kelly
Gender Differences in Grief
Gender Grief, General Grief

After R. Glenn Kelly completed his service in the Marines, he went into law enforcement.  His seemingly rough exterior melted away when his 16 year old son, Jonathan, died.  Jonathan survived multiple open heart surgeries during his brief life time.  Each day Ron and his wife celebrated their son’s life.

R Glenn has dedicated his time and resources to supporting the bereaved community through writing and public  speaking on the topic of grieving men. He is the author of two books, “Sometimes I Cry In the Shower” and “The Grief Case.”  Visit our Books page under Resources to learn more.

Kirkpatrick Deb 2013 05 18Kirkpatrick, Deb
Til Death Do Us Part – A Widow’s Journey Through Grief
Loss of Spouse

Surviving the Holidays

Surviving the Holidays

Deb Kirkpatrick facilitates a series called Surviving the Holidays Grief Care & Support Group at Bayside Church of Granite Bay that runs annually from mid November through the new year to help people deal with all the pressures that come upon them during this unusually difficult time for most people who have experienced a recent loss.  Contact Deb (530.906.9869 or dkirk175@gmail.com) in October or early November for details about when this series.

After the tragic death of her husband Bob on July 16, 1992, as the result of a flight test aircraft accident, Deb became actively involved with grief care and support.  She was the Chaplain over Pastoral Care Ministries at the Desert Vineyard Christian Fellowship Church in Lancaster, California.  Her biggest passion is helping people navigate through those dark times of grief and help them experience joy once again.

In the fall of 2004, Deb moved to Auburn, California, and became involved with one-on-one grief counseling and two separate grief care and support groups with Bayside Church of Granite Bay, “Surviving the Holidays” and “Grief Doesn’t Take the Summer Off.”  She has also led monthly outings for widows called “Weekenders,” and a monthly dinner group, “Let’s Go Traveling,” an outing for people whose loved ones have died.  Deb also ran a care and support group called “Auburn and Beyond” for several years.

kravits-sarah-b-2016-09-24Kravits, Sarah
Sibling Grief Is Underrated!
Sibling Grief

Back to Top


Koenig, Marilyn
Friends for Survivors of Suicide
Suicide, Loss of Child

Serving the Suicide Survivor

Marilyn Koenig is co-founder and Executive Director of Friends for Survival, Inc. established in 1983.  She is a grief counselor and frequent speaker at conferences, workshops and classrooms, including The Compassionate Friends, Law Enforcement Chaplaincy,  and American Association of Suicidology.  Marilyn is a member of American Association of Suicidology since 1985 and recipient of the 2001 AAS Survivor Recognition Award.  She is a founding board member of Suicide Prevention Action Network (SPAN USA) and recipient of the 2007 SPAN USA  Sandy Martin Grassroots Award.  She is the mother of seven children, grandmother of thirteen, great-grandmother of four.  Her son, Steven, died by suicide, April 4, 1977.

Marilyn is a co-author of “Pathways to Purpose and Hope:  A Guide to Creating a Sustainable Suicide Bereavement Support Program for Families and Friends After a Suicide Death.”  This guide is one of the most comprehensive books on the market for those who seek to enhance an existing grief support group or start up a new one.  Click here to download this valuable guide.

Marilyn resides in Sacramento, CA, with her husband.  She is a popular workshop presenter at national conferences for bereaved parents.  One of her most popular workshops is  titled: Guidelines For Offering Support Services After A Suicide Death.

Kowall Kelly 2013 02 12Kowall, Kelly
My Warrior’s Place… A Story of Miracles
Military Returning From War Zone, Military Grief, Child Loss

My Warrior’s Place
My Warrior’s Place – Retreat Center for Military Returning from the War Zone.

Kelly Kowall is the Gold Star Mother of Spc. Corey Kowall. Her experiences as a Certified Life Coach, 10+ years as Business Owner and over 30 years in Sales & Marketing have proven to be invaluable to this non-profit organization. Her creativity and drive is incredible. She is also an active member of VFW Ladies Auxiliary and American Legion Ladies Auxiliary.  After her son, Corey, was killed in action in Afghanistan in 2009, Kelly watched as military members returning from the war zone suffered the consequences of not dealing with their grief.  She was especially saddened by those whose grief and depression left them unable to cope with life.  In honor of her son, Kelly has opened her heart to these young men and women, as well as Veterans from Viet Nam and the Korean Conflict, and started FAVE Boating Expeditions, an outreach to military members  and their families.  She is expanding this outreach to provide a safe haven for them at a retreat center in Florida that is currently under renovation.  Kelly’s faith is astounding as she shares during the program how God clearly has provided guidance and provision for these very unique and much needed outreaches to our Veterans, both young and old.  Kelly welcomes people to email her at Kelly.mwp@gmail.com.

Kelly’s book is available on Amazon.com. Read the review by Jean Johnson.

Additional information about My Warrior’s Place can be found on our “Organizations Worthy of Notice” page.

Back to Top

Kurtz Cathy 2014 04 12bKurtz, Cathy
Living Through The Pain – Lonely Me
Parental Loss, Sibling Loss, Guilt

At the age of 16, Cathy’s parents, older brother and his wife, died together in a small plane crash.  She was left in the care of her college aged brother who, 13 years later died, leaving Cathy alone with no family.  Events before her parents’ death caused her to feel that she had somehow caused this tragedy.

Cathy has spent the last four years focused on writing her memoir, “Living Through The Pain – The Lonely Me,” fulfilling a dream she has had.  “My suffering has provided me with the unique lifetime awareness of what enormous pain an individual can live through and still be able to propel your life forward in a productive manner.  My Christian upbringing provided me my only outlet to find peace and the ability to live through the pain.  I now consider my in-depth understanding of surviving tragedies and using my pain to enrich my life as a calling from God to serve others and assist them in finding the courage to move forward.”

Back to Top

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

–  L –

Leatherby Dave 2014 05 31Leatherby, Daddy Dave
A Testimony of Hope
Child Loss, Dealing with Grief, Sudden Loss

Daddy Dave Leatherby has definitely earned his nickname, “Daddy Dave.”  He and his wife, Sally, have 9 living children, 30 grandchildren, and 28 great grandchildren.  He receives a lot of joy from spending time with his family, but nothing can fill the hole left by his daughter, Theresa, who died of a burst appendix.  Dave and his family have learned how to keep their memories of Theresa alive and turn her death into a blessing for others.

Dave and Sally are owners of the popular ice cream parlor, Leatherby’s Family Creamery.  There are three locations in the Sacramento, California, area.  When you read the menu, you’ll find many of the tempting ice cream treats named after members of Dave’s family.

Dave and Sally have recorded their family history in their recently published book, “Our Faith Journey,” which is available through Amazon.com.

Lewis & HunterDon Lewis
Grief Support for Young Adults
Teen and Young Adult Grief

Don Lewis co-facilitates the UC Davis Hospice Young Adult Bereavement Art Group.  During the series, discussion and art therapy are combined to create a safe environment for those who attend to work through their grief.  This series, held twice a year, is designed for people age 17-24 who are coping with the death of a close relative or friend.  Because this age group is often neglected in their grief, special care is taken to provide a program that will help them deal with their loss with the hope that they will move forward through life without feeling overwhelmed or distracted by their grief.

For additional information about the Young Adult Bereavement Art Group or to register, call Don Lewis  916.734.1139 or email to delewis@ucdavis.edu. View Invitation.

Lidbeck Brandy2 2015 11 21Brandy Lidbeck, LMFT
The Gift of Second

Brandy Lidbeck is a licensed marriage and family therapist that has been both personally and dramatically impacted by the suicide of loved ones. She founded The Gift of Second after recognizing there are limited resources available to those that have also been affected. Brandy’s passion is for other survivors to feel understood, connected, and also experience hope and encouragement through the testimony of others in the same position. You can view her website at www.thegiftofsecond.com.

Lockhart, Deanna – Sharing Parents
Grief Related to Miscarriage and Infant Death
Infant Death & Miscarriage

In 1997, Deanna Lockhart’s second daughter, Tessa, died at 7 weeks old from a congenital heart defect. Deanna and her husband Mike attended group support meetings with Sharing Parents, a support group for parents who have experienced the loss of a baby from the time of conception to early infancy.  For the last 15 years, Deanna has volunteered for Sharing Parents supporting bereaved parents.  Deanna has devoted herself to Sharing Parents and held numerous leadership positions in the organization.

Back to Top

Lord Glen and Tanya2 2013 06 01Lord, Glen & Tanya
The Grief Toolbox
Dealing with Grief, Child Loss, Grief Resources

We know the life altering effects caused by the death of a loved one.  Our son Noah died June 14, 1999 at the age of 4, partially from medical error following a Tonsillectomy.  In addition, Tanya’s mother Gretchen Walsh died of an aortic aneurysm on June 10, 2007, and since then both of Glen’s parents and his sister have passed away. Processing our grief has been hard work, but in time we have learned that joy and sorrow can and do coexist and life can be good again. There are no magic words or shortcuts that will end the grief journey. Calendars and clocks have no place in grieving; instead we need a set of tools that we can use to rebuild our lives. It was this realization that inspired The Grief Toolbox which has truly become an on-line community of grief resources.

The Grief Toolbox provides many tools for those who grieve and those who want to help, including thousands of articles, grief related artwork, a grief group locator, and a Marketplace of grief and memorial products. In addition, we have produced Walking Through Grief DVDs. The Walking Through Grief product line is divided into two products. One is a series of single short DVDs with a variety of different topics. Each DVD is designed to stand alone and be used by individuals or groups. The other is designed to be used in a facilitated environment that includes everything needed to run a successful grief support group.  If you are interested in joining this community, contact …  Glen@TheGriefToolbox.com or Tanya@TheGriefToolbox.com.

We are here for you.” Glen and Tanya

Back to Top

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

– M –

MacDiarmid Ryan 2014 12 06MacDiarmid, Ryan
Topic: From Sorrow to Joy, Christ’s Perspective

Does God really understand how we feel when we’re sad?  Pastor Ryan MacDiarmid’s message from John 16 clarifies Christ’s insight into the grieving process.  Ryan is the lead pastor at Creekside Church in Rocklin, CA.  After listening to the interview with Ryan, you may want to listen to the sermon on line.

Martin Randy 2015 08 01Martin, Randy
What About Being Prepared to Die?
Category Facing Death

Grief Intervention with Teens
Teen Grief

For someone with a terminal illness or in Hospice care, death may be imminent.  One such gentleman whose pastor was sitting beside him said, “We do so much to help people learn how to live… but how do we learn how to die?”  That’s a question that started Pastor Randy Martin on a journey of educating himself on how to help those who are facing eternity at the end of their life here on earth.

Rev. Randy Martin has seen more than his fair share of loss and dying.  As a pastor, he is called upon to support people who are going through the dying process, as well as those who grieve the loss of their loved one.  As a young pastor, he realized that the pastoral training he received in seminary had not prepared him to effectively help people in either of these situations.  Randy’s program on “What About Being Prepared to Die?” will be helpful to all listeners, especially Pastors, Hospice and Hospital Chaplains, and those in a Compassion Outreach.  If you’re facing eternity due to a terminal illness, this program will provide comfort.  Get to know Randy better …


Martinez Dionne 2014 08 30Martinez, Dionne – Sharing Parents
Return to Zero & Understanding the Impact of Miscarriage
Miscarriage & Baby Loss

The loss of their son led Dionne and her husband to a local bereaved parents support group, Sharing Parents, an all -volunteer organization that offers support to parents who have experienced the loss of a child from time of conception to early infancy. Because of the wonderful support they received, a year later Dionne became a volunteer for this organization.  Dionne strongly believes that too often parents with a pregnancy loss are not supported and their beloved babies go unacknowledged.  Learn more about Dionne

On the program, Dionne and Ron discuss the movie, “Return to Zero,” starring Minnie Driver and Paul Adelstein who portray a couple whose baby boy died just short of being full term.  Unborn baby loss is often minimized by those who don’t understand the emotional pain that comes with this experience.  “Return to Zero” sheds light on this often ignored tragedy. Click here to learn more about “Return to Zero” a Lifetime movie.

McGlaughlin, Sue
When Mom Dies
Loss of Parent, Dealing with Grief

Sue McGlaughlin has been facilitating GriefShare at Church of the Foothills in Cameron Park, California, since the Fall of 2012. Church of the Foothills offers the 13-week class twice a year, in the Spring and Fall. Sue has firsthand experience with grief, losing her father when she was 22, one set of grandparents during the pregnancy of her son, and then the loss of her mother in April 2007. It was the loss of her mother that significantly changed her life. Like others, Sue has lost many loved ones during her lifetime. She spearheaded and spoke at a “Hope in Grief” seminar at Church of the Foothills in August of 2015 and is looking forward to this being an annual event. Sue lives in the beautiful foothills of Northern California where her extended family also lives. She is married, loves teaching at her church, writing poetry, speaking and encouraging others, and helping people through their journey of grief.

Mitchell, Cindy, Aly & Izy Foundation
Help for Families of NICU Babies
Support Organizations

Cyndi and Dustin Mitchell learned first hand about the emotional and physical trauma parents go through when their baby is in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.  Their triplets were born prematurely, two girls and a boy.  They were devastated at the loss of their infant son, while experiencing the joy of having two beautiful healthy daughters, Alison and Isabelle.  Because of their own experience, Dustin and Cyndi created the Aly & Izy Foundation (AIF) to help the babies and families that require treatment in the NICU, to help make a NICU stay a little easier.  Click here to visit the Aly and Izy Foundation website to find out how you can help.  One of their funding sources is Aly & Izy’s Closet, a virtual thriftstore that focuses on everything imaginable for children.  Visit their facebook page at Aly & Izy’s Closet Facebook.

Back to Top

Morgan Terry PastorMorgan, Terry

Chaplain Terry Morgan is the founder of the Gold Country Chaplaincy, a pastor and author. He is a favorite on Hope, Healing and Help, because of his extensive knowledge of grief and how to deal and work through it.  His book, “What to do When Grief Kidnaps Your Soul, provides an accurate description of grief and the many emotions we encounter as we work through the loss of a loved one.

What is PTSD?
(Military returning from War Zone, Post Traumatic Stress, Complicated and Compounded Grief)

Marriage CAN Survive the Loss of a Child
(Child Loss, Marriage and Grief)

Three Reactions to Grief
(Dealing With Grief)

Difficult Questions About Grief
(Dealing with Grief)

Understanding the Holiday Grief of Our Active Duty Military 
(Military Grief)

Unrecognized Grief

Grief 101 – The Basics Part 1

Grief 101 – The Basics Part 

Companioning Those Who Are Grieving Part 1

Companioning Those Who Are Grieving Part 2

The Need for Trained Church Chaplains

The Impact of Unresolved Grief

Chaplain/Pastor Terry Morgan is an ordained minister with over 30 years of experience.  He has spent almost 25 years as a law enforcement chaplain. He is currently the Pastor of the Church of the Indwelling in Redding, CA, and the Senior Chaplain/Executive Director of Gold Country Chaplaincy and Press4hope. Read More…

Munafo-Kanoza SheilaB 2015 12 12Sheila Munafo-Kanoza
Aspects of Teen Grief
Dealing with Grief, Teen Grief

Sheila Munafo-Kanoza is the Founder & Executive Director of Companions on a Journey Grief Support organization.  She has an extensive knowledge of all aspects of grief, including the effects of grief and loss on teens. At the urging of her high school aged sons, she developed a teen focused program on grief which is active on many high school campuses.  [Read about Sheila Mufano-Kanoza’s…]

Learn more about Companions on a Journey:

About Companions On A Journey
Companions On A Journey – Children and Teen Services
Companions On A Journey – Aspects of Teen Grief
Featured Article in Alive Magazine

Back to Top

Kris Munsch2Munsch, Kris
The Birdhouse Project: Rebuilding Your Life After Tragedy
Dealing with Grief

Kris Munsch, creator of the The Birdhouse Project, experienced the ultimate tragedy of the death of his son, 16-year old son, Blake, in 2005. His life fell apart as his marriage failed and he lost his job and businesses.  Kris will talk about his own experience in seeking to rebuild his life. He will share about The Birdhouse Project, a tangible tool that can be used to identify the areas of life, grief or crisis that are broken and how this tangible visual can help you find a direction for moving forward.  Kris will be one of the featured speakers at the National Gathering of the Bereaved Parents of the USA.  He will also guide parents and teens through The Birdhouse Project during workshops at the Gathering.  Here are links to two additional interview videos with Kris Munsch and Jeff Foquet, co-writers of The Birdhouse Project:  It’s Our Community, Open to Hope, and The Birdhouse Project Presentation.

Back to Top

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

– N –

Nichols Scott & TeresaA 2014 07 12Nichols, Scott & Teresa
From Glory to Glory
Murdered Child

Scott & Teresa Nichols share how their faith helped them survive the unthinkable tragedy of the brutal murder of their son Ethan and his fiancé Carissa.  They talk about how they dealt with the trial, learned to forgive and work through their loss while strengthening their marriage and relationship with God.

Scott & Teresa are open to email messages from others who need someone to talk with who understands the journey of a parent of a murdered child.  Their email addresses are Scott: ScottNichols59@gmail.com and Teresa: StormyTN@hotmail.com.

Back to Top

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

– O – P – Q –

Patton Mary Lisa 2015 02 07Mary Lisa Patton
The Effect of Alcohol & Drugs On Grief
Category: Dealing with Grief

Mary Lisa Patton is a Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor, currently with the Valley Recovery Center in Sacramento, California.  Experiencing and healing from her own recovery journey, Mary had a heart to relate to and help other woman. She pursued Psychology in college and it was during that time she worked at a fancy resort in Southern California where she saw the pain and emptiness of woman who had it all on the outside, yet were filling their pain on the inside with alcohol.  She believes God gave her this passion as it was working there that he provided another opportunity to work directly with woman recovering from substance abuse.  Click here to read more about Mary Lisa’s background and experience.  Click here to read more about Mary Lisa’s background and experience.

LPatterson Lisa isa Patterson
Following Our Good Shepherd Through Grief
Child Loss, Dealing with Grief, Traumatic Grief

Lisa’s motto in life is that “God works in you so that He can work through you.” Lisa has been through some very painful things in life but she has discovered that Jesus is enough for whatever we face in this world and He is able to make something beautiful out of our brokenness.  Click Here to learn more about Lisa.

Join Lisa Payne Patterson on Facebook.  She would love to hear from you! Email Lisa at sevenboys4me@aol.com.


Pedersen, Alan Pedersen Alan 2012 12 29
The Importance of Grief Work
Dealing with Grief, Child Loss, Loss of Spouse

Letting Go of Your Guilt and Regrets
Dealing with Grief, Guilt

Alan Pedersen is a nationally recognized inspirational speaker on grief and loss, an award winning songwriter, and successful recording artist. On August 15, 2001, Alan’s life was changed forever when his oldest child and only daughter, Ashley, died as the result of an automobile accident.  Alan turned his journey of grief and the pain of loss into a collection of powerful and moving songs that he shares with audiences of bereaved parents across the nation.  From 2010 – 2013, Alan and his wife, Denise, travelled throughout the United States on their popular concert “Angels Across the USA” tour, performing Alan’s original music during concerts for bereaved parents.  Alan is currently the Executive Director of The Compassionate Friends (TCF).

Back to Top


Pobanz-Stelter, Christine

Companions on the Journey – Walking with someone near the end of life
End of Life Support, Hospice

Christine Pobanz-Stelter is a Chaplain with Vitas Hospice in Sacramento, California.  She focuses on providing training to churches and organizations using the “Companions on the Journey” program.  This program teaches us how to effectively serve families who are caring for a loved one during the last stages of life.


Project Grace, Service Trips for Families Grieving the Death of a Child
Project Grace

Founded in 2007 by Carole Mahoney and Catherine Bowen Stern, Project Grace offers grieving mothers the opportunity to honor their lost children through service.  Carole and Catherine were inspired by the documentary film, Motherland, which explored grief and loss in another culture, and the healing opportunities in volunteering far from home, Project Grace seeks to provide a unique and transforming option for persons suffering the death of a child. Their mission is to create a safe and supportive environment in which bereaved mothers, fathers and family members can honor their loved one through service.  Project Grace was named in honor of Grace Caldwell Magill 1989 – 2005. Visit www.project-grace.org for photos and stories about past service outreaches and to get information about upcoming trips.  Contact Carole and Catherine by email at info@project-grace.org.

Prosser-Dodds Lisa 2016 03 12Prosser Dodds, Lisa
Personality Types and Grief
Dealing with Grief, Companioning the Bereaved

Lisa Prosser Dodds, Ph.D., is an internationally known keynote speaker, trainer, consultant and coach. Her focus on the resilience of the human spirit will touch you and give you the courage to make the changes needed to reach maximum potential.   She received her Masters of Science Degree in Counseling from Western Illinois University and her PhD in Psychology from Capella University. Her doctoral research was focused on grief and its relationship to personalities. Lisa is also a trauma response specialist, serving in New Orleans for six months post Katrina and now serves a variety of clients, providing immediate on-site assistance to businesses experiencing either unanticipated trauma or facing anticipated change.  She can be reached at lisaprosserdodds.com.

Her new book, “GriefTypes: Your Grief, Your Way,” will be available soon.  Visit her website to request notification of when her book is released.

Back to Top

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

– R –

Redding, John
John’s Journey – A Father’s Story
Child Loss, Law Enforcement

In the early morning of October 9, 2005, John Redding’s son, Officer Matt Redding with the Rocklin Police Department, was called upon to participate in setting up a roadblock along Hwy 65 on the Rocklin/Roseville border. He was struck and killed by a vehicle driven by a drunk driver.  That moment changed John’s life  forever.

A non-profit organization in Matt’s honor has been established to help students from Rocklin schools pursue their dream of a college education.  He also speaks at Every 15 Minutes Parent Retreats.  This event is part of a nationwide effort to educate high school students on the sobering truth that driving drunk can, and does, kill innocent people.

Click here to learn more about the Matt Redding Foundation.

Rodriguez Crystal with JeanneRRodriguez, Victor & Jeanne
Remembering Crystal
Loss of Spouse

Victor & Crystal Rodriguez’s honeymoon ended abruptly just 12 days after their wedding when Crystal died in a parasailing accident and Victor suffered life threatening injuries. Victor talks about his experience of being told about Crystal’s tragic death while laying alone in a Puerto Rican hospital. Joining him is his mom, Jeanne Rodriguez, and together they discuss their personal experiences with grieving their loss.

Rodriguez Crystal & Victor WeddingCrystal’s vibrant life has continued to bless others through the Crystal Rodriguez Memorial Scholarship Fund INC. To learn about their upcoming 4th Annual Golf Tournament to take place on 10/10/15, and how you can get involved, visit www.crmsf2.com or connect on FaceBook.

News Report of the Accident:  Rodriguez News Article 2011 06 30

Jeanne’s Bio:  Rodriguez, Jeanne

Victor’s Bio:  Rodriguez, Victor

Russell Becky 2013 11 09BRussell, Becky
Ten Things I Learned From My Grief Part 1
Dealing with Grief

Parenting Children and Teens Who Are Grieving
Dealing with Grief, Sibling Grief

Weepy Seeds, Sowing in tears; Weeping in Joy
Dealing with Grief

In 2004, Becky’s oldest daughter, Jae Lynn, was killed in a car accident.  Becky’s career had prepared her for assisting and teaching others about the grieving process, but she quickly found that living it was entirely different than she anticipated.  Becky is a Registered Nurse with a Bachelors of Science in nursing and a Masters degree in Health Service Administration.  Her experience is in Intensive Care Nursing, Health Management and she is currently a Staff Specialist at Baptist Health, the largest medical system in the State of Arkansas.  Becky is the author of a popular blog entitled “WeepySeeds,” and currently serves on the National Board of the Bereaved Parents of the USA.


Russell Mindi 2015 06 06Russell, Chaplain Mindi
Hope for the Journey
Dealing with Grief, Loss of Parents, Chaplaincy

Understanding the Grief of First Responders Part 1
Understanding the Grief of First Responders Part 2
Law Enforcement


Senior Chaplain Mindi Russell is the Executive Director of the Law Enforcement Chaplaincy-Sacramento serving over 30 years as an ordained minister and 22 years as a career law enforcement chaplain with over 150 volunteer chaplains.  She is a national speaker in the areas of grief, trauma, surviving victorious, and how hope can help you get better rather than bitter when the worst happens to you.

Rutz, MichelleB 20140524Rutz, Michelle
Topic:  A Journey of the Heart
Category:  Loss of Child, Dealing with Grief
Date:  May 24, 2014

Michelle Rutz is a mother of four and lives in Apple Hill with her husband, Ken.  Her career is in elementary education, and in 2011 she began a doctorate program in psychology.  She and Ken founded the Kenny Rutz Endless Joy Foundation in honor of their son, Kenny, who died in January 2012.  Their mission is to open a healing sanctuary retreat on the island of Kauai where they will be relocating this summer.

Back to Top

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

– S –

Salisbury Roy & Debbie 2013 03 30Salisbury, Debbie & Roy
Topic:  Grief That Comes With Divorce
Category:  Divorce
Date:  March 30, 2013

Debbie and Roy Salisbury currently co-facilitate DivorceCare at Bridgeway Church in Rocklin, CA.

Click Here to learn more about Debbie & Roy Salisbury.

Schumacher PattyB 2014 05 17Schumacher, Patty
A Gold Star Mom Remembers
(Categories: Military Loss, Child Loss, Sudden Loss, Gold Star Mothers)

Patriotic songs have always held a special place in Patty Schumacher’s heart.  As a child in school, when her class sang songs such as “America the Beautiful,” “My Country ’tis of Thee,” and “God Bless America,” she was especially touched.  Looking back, she feels that this sensitivity may have been a forewarning of what would occur on October 13, 2010, involving her oldest child, Victor, who was then serving in the Marines in Afghanistan.  Read Patty’s Story

Sewell Steve 2015 07 11Sewell, Steve 
Topic:  What to Say When Life Happens
Categories:  Companioning the Bereaved
Dates:  Part 1:  July 11, 2015
Part 2:  July 18, 2015

Steve Sewell’s passion is to provide comfort and help to people during life loss, transitions and grief.  During this program, based on his book, “At a Loss, Learning How to Comfort Others Through the Journey of Grief Using Scripture and Prayer,” Steve will provide you with words of encouragement to share when “life happens” and we just don’t know what to say. Visit Steve’s website here.  Read Steve’s Story…

Back to Top

Sheridan Jim 2014 01BSheridan, Jim
Topic:  Grief Care Provided by Hospice Organizations
Category:  Hospice
Date:  February 1, 2014

Jim Sheridan has been a Chaplain with VITAS Innovative Hospice Care since 2008.  He was a pastor for many years and transitioned into the hospice chaplaincy after the death of his mother who was cared for by VITAS.  Jim feels privileged to be of assistance to patients and families during the end of life process, as well as continued follow up with the family members following the death of their loved one.

Sims Darcie 2013 05 02Sims, Darcie
Finding Joy in Sorrow
(Dealing with Grief, Grief Recovery)

For many years, Darcie Sims has been an icon in the world of grief recovery.  She paved the way for grief therapy after the death of her young son, Austin “Big A.”  At that time, there were no support groups and very few resources to help people on their journey after losing a loved one.

Bereaved Parents of the USA Loses a Good Friend Darcie D. Sims May 20, 1947 – February 27, 2014
(Published on page 6 of the Bereaved Parents of the USA Newsletter, Journeying Together, Spring 2014)
Darcie Sims was one of us. She listened to our stories, she felt our pain, she walked our walk, she made us laugh, she made us cry and she always taught us something to help in our grieving the death of our child or children. She was a strong supporter of … Read More

Smith Steve 2015 07 25Smith, Steve
Topic:  Grief Healings
Categories: Anticipatory Grief, Hospice, Dealing with Grief, Dealing with Life,

Steve Smith serves Green Valley Hospice in Roseville, California, as a Chaplain and the Bereavement Coordinator, where he regularly visits with the community with individual and group sessions. His work “Grief Healings” offers care and comfort, and also guides people through life’s losses. Not all losses are losing a loved one, although this is a biggie! His perspective of common sense and practicality – sprinkled with a little humor – is a refreshing and healing way to change our outlook about losses.  Read more…

Back to Top

Mike & Leanne SparlingSparling, Mike & Leanne
Fighting the Good Fight
(Military, Sudden Death)

Mike and Leanne Sparling’s 22 year old son, Michael Lee Sparling, died in June 2011 just prior to being deployed to Afghanistan.  Michael was an exemplary soldier in the U.S. Army, and was excited about serving his country.  His tragic death was caused by the effects of DMAA which is an ingredient in some energy supplements.  During the program, they share about their journey and their quest to have DMAA banned by the FDA. 2013.06.01


Sprague, Zander
Choosing a Positive Pathway After Loss
(Sibling Grief, General Grief, Grief Recovery)

Zander Sprague shares about the loss of his sister to murder and the devastation it caused his entire family. As a sibling, he felt that his grief was not recognized by other members of his family or by his friends.  Most support groups and books are focused on parental rather than sibling grief. Part of Zander’s therapy in dealing with his loss was writing a book for siblings titled “Making Lemonade… Choosing a Positive Pathway After Losing Your Sibling.” This interview offers encouragement not only to bereaved siblings, but also to anyone who has lost a loved one and is seeking to find a purpose in their life through their experience. 2017.01.07


Stieglitz Gil 2015 09 12 BGil Stieglitz
Does God Have Emotions? Part 1 – Old Testament

Does God Have Emotions? Part 2 – New Testament

Dr. Gil Stieglitz is an author, speaker, catalyst, professor, and leadership consultant. He is a frequent guest speaker at churches, retreats, seminars, and conference nationwide. Organizationally and personally, Dr. Gil is a catalyst for positive change. His knowledge of God through his study of the Bible has given us the insight he shares with us in this interview about the emotional makeup of God.  [Learn more about Dr. Stieglitz…]

You can subscribe to Gil’s daily devotional, Principles To Live By, online at http://www.ptlb.com/#!daily-devotional-newsletter/c18hf.

Stirling LindaC 2014 08 09

Linda Stirling, Under God’s Umbrella

Stirling, Linda
Topic:  Hope for a Broken Heart
(Child Loss, Hope, Sudden Death)

Linda D. Stirling is the San Diego Coordinator for Umbrella Ministries, a national outreach for grieving mothers.  She is a Senior Vice President, Wealth Management Advisor with UBS Financial Services INC. where she works with her surviving son, Greg.  She is married to Larry, a former California State Senator, and enjoys special time with their five grandsons and one granddaughter.  Linda is available for speaking.  Linda is author of the book entitled, “Hope for a Broken Heart, Powerful Stories of Healing After the Death of a Child.”

Sullivan Laura 2016 05 28

Laura Sullivan, Family and Marriage Therapist with a focus on Grief

Sullivan, Laura
Topic: Stifled Grief Is Not Relief
(Dealing with Grief)

Topic: Therapeutic Activities for the Bereaved
(Dealing with Grief )

Laura Sullivan has a grief therapy style that she developed as a result of her own loss.  Laura’s oldest son Kyle died suddenly in 2011, launching her into a new journey and career path. After Kyle’s death, she earned her Master’s Degree in Marriage and Family Therapy.  Laura’s approach with her clients is to companion them with a deep level of understanding, joining with them in their journey to discover their new normal.  In her program entitled “Stifled Grief Is Not Relief,” Laura discusses the importance of allowing oneself to feel their grief, even though our culture tells us to stuff it or get over it!  She touches upon the uniqueness of each person’s grieving experience, and helps us gain an understanding of holistic grieving … emotionally, physically, socially and spiritually.

In her program on Therapeutic Activities for the Bereaved, Laura shares from her extensive list of activities that will help those who are grieving to work through their emotions and gain an understanding of how grief affects them. These activities will assist us as we move through our grief journey.

Sometimes life can be overwhelming and our inner strength can be lost or forgotten.  Laura is a registered Marriage and Family Therapist Intern (IMF89099), currently on staff with The Place Within in Folsom CA.  In addition, due to Laura’s personal path in life, she is passionate about working with those that are struggling with overwhelming feelings of grief and loss.  Loss can be experienced in many ways.  It is Laura’s desire to support those that are struggling in life.  Together we can take a journey. “Turn your wounds into wisdom.” – Ophrah Winfrey.  [Read more about Laura]

SummersCorinne 2013 02 16

Corinne Summers, her only son killed in a random shooting

Summers, Corinne
Dealing with the Murder of a Child
(Murdered Child)

Corinne Summers lives in Citrus Heights, CA, and currently serves on the Steering Committee of the local chapter of the Bereaved Parents of the USA.  In 1993, Corinne’s 22 year old son, Troy, was shot and killed by a mentally deranged man.  Troy was enjoying an evening with friends when the killer fired shots into the crowd.  During the years since her son was murdered, Corinne has vowed that, although the convicted murderer claimed her son’s life that night, she would not allow him to claim her life, too, through anger.  In 2010, Corinne was introduced to the Sacramento-South Placer Chapter of the Bereaved Parents of the USA and now reaches out to other bereaved parents.  Corinne tells the story of her journey and also shares her views on the controversial gun control issue, as well as how God’s compassion has helped her deal with her son’s murder.

Even after 22 years, Corinne finds that when she shares with others about her loss, she is a blessing to others.  Please take a few minutes to read Corinne’s Story about Connecting On A Deeper Level.

Back to Top

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

– T –

Tannenbaum Debbie2 2014 04 05

Debbie Tannenbaum, Hospice

Tannenbaum, Debbie – Bristol Hospice
Can Death and Grief Be Controlled?

(Dealing with Grief, Hospice)

Debbie Tannenbaum is a Bereavement Coordinator for Bristol Hospice in Sacramento, California, where she provides pre- and post-bereavement grief support and referrals, conducts in-service training on a wide variety of mental health topics and coordinates Bristol’s “We Honor Veterans” committee to ensure that excellent care at the end of life is available for our nation’s Veterans and support for their families. Debbie recently hails from beautiful Mendocino County where she taught “The Psychology of Loss and Death” at Mendocino College, was a therapist for nonprofits and county mental health, and fostered 5 teens. For fun, Debbie enjoys spending time upcycling jewelry in her studio, attending cultural events with friends, and having adventures with her grandsons.

Tingler Amanda2 2013 04 20

Amanda Tingler, caring for grieving teens

Tingler, Amanda
Child & Teen Grief
(Child Grief, Teen Grief)

Amanda Tingler’s grief counseling experience includes work with blended families, adoption or foster care issues, transition to the teen years, and college preparation.  She also has extensive experience with co-parent counseling, sports psychology, and life coaching.



Brennan Toohey, Veteran dealing with PTSD

Toohey, Brennan
Understanding the Trauma and Grief of Our Veterans
(Returning from a war zone, Military Loss, Traumatic Loss, Post Traumatic Stress)

Brennan Toohey served with the US Military in the 1960’s.  He experienced the trauma of many veterans of the Vietnam era who fought in the war.  When Brennan returned home, his experience with post traumatic stress (PTS) was misunderstood and it affected his life in every way.  Brennan’s poem, “Borrowed Time,” gives us insight into the hearts and minds of those who came back not knowing how to deal with the effects of PTS.  Truthfully, until recently, not many people understood the long term effects of war on those who have been in the midst of it until recently.  Read more…

Turrentine Sheila 2016 08 27

Shiela Turrentine, Author

Turrentine, Sheila
This Is My Story, This Is My Song
(Child Loss, Faith)

This is My Story, This is My Song is Sheila Turrentine’s debut auto-biography. She states that “I write like I talk, and I am not always grammatically or politically correct. No one intends to have to write about grief and loss, but life happens, and sometimes you need to share your testimony in order to encourage and comfort others.”

Sheila currently lives near Carmi, Illinois, a small Southern Illinois rural community nestled near the Little Wabash River. She has been married for 28 years to Joe Turrentine of Norris City, Illinois. They have three children, Emilie Jo (forever-18), Peyton Wade, and adopted “daughter of my heart”, Samantha Reigh. Sheila and her family attend Crossroads Bible Church in Norris City, Illinois.

Through her writing Sheila wants her faith in Jesus to show foremost and to give thanks to God for His guidance, and for the words to share her family’s experiences.

Back to Top

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

– U –

Utter Judy2 2013 07 06

Judy Utter, Mothers Against Drunk Driving

Utter, Judy
When Your Loved One is Killed by a Drunk Driver
(Child Loss, Complicated Grief, Traumatic Loss)

Judy Utter has been a member of Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) since 1990 when her daughter was killed in a teenage DUI crash in Carmichael, California.  She is the Victim Specialist in the MADD California State Office located in Sacramento. The State Office provides victim services for Sacramento, Placer, El Dorado and Yolo Counties, as well as for all counties in California that don’t have a MADD presence.  As a Victim Advocate, Judy provides individual guidance and emotional support to victims and families during court proceedings and connects them with local agencies for help.  Judy can be reached by calling the MADD Sacramento office at 916.481.6233.  Visit the MADD National website at www.MADD.orgRead more…

Back to Top

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

– V –

Vincent Shayne 2014 04 05 Bristol

Shayne Vincent asks the hard questions

Vincent, Shayne – Bristol Hospice/Sacramento
Can Death and Grief Be Controlled?
Categories: Dealing with Grief, Hospice

Shayne Vincent has had 12 years of ministerial experience, 14 years in the therapeutic field with 6 of those years being with Hospice.  Currently, he is a Bereavement Coordinator with Bristol Hospice in Sacramento, California. Shayne is a lover of nature, philosophy, theology, and the creative arts. His journey through the valley of shadows has led to his finding comfort as an observer, as well empowering his role as a professional. Shayne has a blog available for viewing at www.shaynemasonvincent.com.


Back to Top

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

– W –

Warn Linda 2013 12 21

Linda Warn, Co-Founder of Lost But Not Forgotten

Warn, Linda
Title:  Lost But Not Forgotten (Recorded with the program on The Role of Hospice in Grief Support)
(Dealing with Grief/Special Events)

After two of their sons died in 2008, Linda and Robert Warn looked for a way to fill the void during the holidays.  The result of their search was “Lost But Not Forgotten,” a holiday outreach that provides the special touches of Christmas for underprivileged families.  The focus is on teenagers who are often overlooked during the holidays.  Linda and Robert welcome community participation in this notable program.  It especially offers an opportunity for bereaved parents, like themselves, to do for other children what they can no longer do for themselves. The event is scheduled for the second Sunday afternoon in December. Visit their Facebook Page to see photos.

Wayman Laura DW 2016 08 12B

Laura Wayman, The Dementia Whisperer

Wayman, Laura
Anticipatory Grief
Anticipatory Grief)

Dementia Related Grief
(Anticipatory Loss, Dealing with Life, Memory Loss)

Laura Wayman, founder of The Dementia Whisperer, has dedicated her life’s work to the goal of supporting, educating, and encouraging family and professional caregivers of anyone diagnosed with Alzheimer’s or any type of dementia, in a ground-breaking way, that will help dementia care recipients to remain in a place of compassion, love and acceptance.  Visit Laura’s website, The Dementia Whisperer, to learn about the training program and resources Laura offers. Visit Laura’s personal website, www.laurawayman.com, where she shares focused information on Alzheimer’s or any form of dementia or memory loss.  Laura’s book, “A Loving Approach to Dementia Care,” published by Johns Hopkins University, is available on line through Laura’s website.

Weikel Dave & Beth 2014 07 05

Dave & Beth Weikel

Weikel, Dave & Beth
Title: God’s Faithfulness, Bringing Life Out Of Loss
(Dealing with Loss)

Dave & Beth Weikel have experienced many types of losses, but the most poignant was the death of their son, Ian, who died while serving in Iraq with the Ghost Troop.  Trained as disaster relief chaplains, and former career educators with experience in full-time ministry, Dave and Beth have learned how to survive intense sorrow. Its heartbreak and upheaval has taught them to cling to what cannot be taken away and has challenged them to wring purpose and meaning from those times of suffering. Please join us for this broadcast as Dave & Beth share how their faith has made the difference for them in dealing with loss. Read more…

Williams Joe 2014 03 29B

Chaplain Joseph Williams discussing suicide

Williams, Joseph – Chaplain with Community Hospice in Modesto, California
Title:  Dealing with Suicide
Category:  Suicide

Joseph Williams has a unique personal story.  He became an orphan as a young child.  He was adopted by abusive parents, and subsequently lived in 7 foster homes during his childhood.  He was rescued during his attempted suicide at the age of 12 by his current foster mother who cared enough to get him enrolled in various treatments to help him deal with his past.  Later as an adult, his brother died by suicide, and Joseph had to deal with guilt and regret over this tragic loss.  His message is compelling as he talks about how to reach out to those who may be contemplating suicide. Chaplain Joe serves with Community Hospice in Modesto, California, and is also a pastor and motivational speaker on adoption, foster care, and adolescent suicide prevention.  Contact Chaplain Joe by emailing ChaplainJWill@gmail.com.

Williason JennyB 2014 06 21Williamson, Jenny
Title:  Rebuilding Lives, Hope for Victims of Sex Trafficking
Category:  Human Trafficking

Jenny Williamson is the Founder and CEO of Courage Worldwide, an international, non-profit organization that builds homes for children rescued out of sex trafficking.   These homes are called Courage House.  Jenny and her organization have spearheaded a comprehensive program to assist in the rescue and restoration of these young, vulnerable victims and have done ground-breaking research regarding the complex trauma of sexual exploitation, best practice therapy models and the healing process. Courage Worldwide successfully operates two homes for rescued children – one in Northern California and one in Tanzania, Africa. In addition, the organization is prototyping Courage House and plans to build one in every city around the world that needs one.  Click here to learn more about Jenny.  Jenny can be contacted by phone at 916-617-1616 or email to j.williamson@courageworldwide.org.

Wolfelt Alan (2) 2016 02

Alan Wolfelt, Ph.D., Renouned Researcher, Author and Presenter on Grief Issues

Wolfelt, Dr. Alan
Title:  Death, Grief & Mourning, Essential Caregiving Principles & Practices
Category:  Dealing with Grief

Author, educator, and grief counselor Dr. Alan Wolfelt is known across North America for his inspirational teaching gifts. His compassionate messages about healing in grief—based on his own personal losses as well as his experience supporting children, teens, adults, and families over the last three decades—speak not only to the intellect but to the hearts of all who hear him. Perhaps best known for his model of “companioning” versus “treating” mourners, Dr. Wolfelt is committed to helping people mourn well so they can live well and love well. See more…

Dr. Wolfelt’s seminar on “Death, Grief and Mourning: Essential Caregiving Principles & Practice,” will be hosted in Sacramento CA, and Reno NV by Sierra Donor Services.

Alice Wisler

Alice Wisler, Author

Wisler, Alice J.
Title: Writing for Hope & Healing
Dealing with Grief

Alice Wisler’s book, “Getting Out of Bed In the Morning” is an inspiring book for those dealing with loss.  This, along with her other books published by Bethany House and River North/Moody, make her an author in her own right.  She also inspires others through her workshops on “Writing the Heartache” and “Writing the Psalms,” an on-line workshop.  Enjoy the interview on Hope, Healing & Help as Alice shares how writing can promote healing in our journey.  Click Here to read more about Alice Wisler.  

Woodard Donna 2015 04 11 Grief Letter

Donna Woodard, Loss of her only son

Donna Woodard
The Significance & Importance of Writing a Grief Letter
(Dealing with Grief)

When Donna Woodard’s only son, Justin, died in a single car accident on Thanksgiving Day 2010, she was devastated.  Justin was her only child and Donna had raised him as a single parent since he was 6 years old.  Looking for help with her grief, she attended GriefShare at Hillside Church (formerly Adventure Church) in Rocklin, California.  An activity suggested during the GriefShare program is to write a grief letter to share with family and friends to explain how they will be able to help. Although it was difficult, Donna did write that letter and shared it with everyone she knew.  (You can read Donna’s letter by clicking  HERE.)  Her letter was well received and many responded very positively.  2016.01.30

Donna is determined to return to a life of purpose and meaning.  She currently serves on the Steering Committee for the Sacramento-Placer County Chapter of the Bereaved Parents of the USA, reaching out to other bereaved parents.

Wright H NormanB 2014 02 08Wright, Dr. H. Norman

Recovering From Losses In Life

Understanding Ambiguous Loss – When Someone Goes Missing

Dr. H. Norman Wright, is the Founder and Director of Family Counseling & Enrichment and Christian Marriage Enrichment in California.  He is a Psychologist, counselor and seminar speaker, as well as an author of over 70 books on topics such as grief, communication, and family relationships.  He is also a participant in the well known and recently updated GriefShare video series.

H. Norman Wright uses his years of teaching, counseling and personal experiences to prepare and equip others in a valuable ministry to someone who is hurting. This post graduate level training is for ministers, counselors, lay counselors, teachers, first responders, or anyone interested in developing and increasing their skills in grief and crisis/trauma counseling to empower them to be proactive and effective in times of difficult loss.  Visit Dr. Wright’s website, www.hnormanwright.com, to learn more about his educational background and experience.

Dr. Wright has written many books on the subject of grief, including What to Say When You Don’t Know What to Say, which is an important resource for  people who want to reach out to someone who has a recent loss.  Information about all of the books he has written can be found on his website.

Back to Top

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

– X – Y – Z –


Zander Sprague

Zander Sprague

Choosing a Positive Pathway After Loss
(Sibling Loss, Dealing with Loss)

Zander Sprague shares about the loss of his sister to murder and the devastation it caused his entire family. As a sibling, however, he felt that his grief was not recognized by other members of his family or his friends.  Support groups and books are focused on parental rather than sibling grief. Part of his therapy in dealing with his loss was writing a book for siblings titled “Making Lemonade… Choosing a Positive Pathway After Losing Your Sibling.”  Currently Zander is a grief coach and is a popular speaker on grief, especially related to sibling loss.

Back to Top