The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

November 3, 2012

Hospice plans memorial service for community


For The Register-Herald

BECKLEY — Hospice of Southern West Virginia (HSWV) will host its annual community memorial service at 6 p.m. Nov. 13 at the Family Worship Center, Pinewood Drive, Beckley. The service is open and available to the public.

The title of this year’s service is “Reflect, Remember and Honor.” It is a way that families can come together and reflect on the life of their loved ones and to honor them. The memorial service will include an American Legion presentation for all veterans, a candle-lighting ceremony, a video tribute and, immediately following the service, refreshments.

“Understanding the holidays can be a very trying time for those who have experienced the death of a loved one, we provide our community memorial service as a way for the loved ones to ‘Reflect, Remember and Honor’ the deceased,” said Harold Dobbins, social services director for HSWV. “The purpose of the memorial service is to celebrate the life of the person who was lost. It helps family and friends draw emotional support, and it presents a public display of acknowledgment of the person’s life.”

With the holidays approaching, HSWV is also providing a free three-week “Coping with the Holidays” support group dealing with unique grief during holidays. It is available to anyone 18 or older, and sessions will offer guidance and tools to help people cope during the holiday season.

The group will explore issues such as loneliness, uncertainty, confusion, anger, pressure, sadness, fear, isolation and traditions. The sessions will address what strategies one can use to endure the holidays such as flexibility or change, foresight or adjustment, limitations and small joys.

The sessions will begin Nov. 20 and conclude Dec. 4. Two sessions will run during each Tuesday during that time from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. and from 6 to 8 p.m., to help accommodate a variety of schedules of those who would like to attend.

“Hospice of Southern West Virginia’s annual memorial service and ‘Coping with the Holidays’ is an extension of continued support to the families we have served as well as the bereaved community,” added Jewell Field, Hospice bereavement support specialist. “It is a time families can share in the experience of honoring, memorializing and celebrating the lives of their loved ones. This is a very meaningful opportunity for Hospice of Southern West Virginia to honor those we have served and their families.”

Year-round HSWV offers a free 13-month program available to families Hospice has served and also to community families Hospice has not served. Services include monthly or quarterly phone calls, monthly mailings, event mailings, one-on-one counseling and a six-week bereavement support group geared toward providing support to those in mourning over the loss of a loved one.

For more information about the memorial service, the “Coping with the Holidays” Support Group, or HSWV bereavement services, call 304-255-6404 or go to www.hospiceofsouthernwv.org.