Release Date: 03-21-2006 Click here for a larger view
(Honesdale, March 19, 2006)… “Celebration” and “bereavement” are not often heard in the same sentence, unless one is talking about the 20th anniversary of the local chapter of The Compassionate Friends (TCF). On April 19th at Wayne Memorial Hospital, this self-help group for families of children who have died will hold a celebration to mark two decades of offering friendship and understanding to grieving relatives—like Sandy Worobey of Preston Township.
“The Compassionate Friends helped me get through and still does,” says the mother of three young boys. She lost her oldest son, Joshua, in a farm accident in 1999. He was only seven years old. “Just to sit next to someone who’s gone through something like what I’ve been through, the terrible gut-wrenching pain, it helps make everything seem alright—even if it isn’t.”
The Wayne County TCF chapter, started in 1986, is one of 600 chapters nationally. Founded originally in England in 1969, the group’s mission is “to assist families toward the positive resolution of grief following the death of a child of any age and to provide information to help others be supportive.”
The coordinator and founder of the local chapter, Sharon Gumpper of Honesdale, says the group’s regular meetings at Wayne Memorial Hospital “provide a caring environment in which bereaved parents, grandparents and siblings can work through their grief with the help of others who have been there.”