Will Help

  Funerals & Memorials

Grief: What I Do Best

Rituals honoring the end-of-life should be about the person who has died, the values they cherished, and the legacy they leave. I work with families and friends to create completely unique ceremonies that are appropriate to the dearest beliefs of the deceased and those who mourn them.

No two ceremonies of the hundreds of funerals, memorial services, and graveside rituals I have performed are alike. Because all of my services are different, I charge by the hour instead of using a flat fee which to me fails to reflect the ease or complexity of a specific ritual. This is an uncommon practice, but I have found it to be fair to both those responsible for paying the bill and to me for the considerable hours of work I put into the design and performance of the event. After a brief consultation, I am able to give a fair estimate of how much my fee will be.

I accept the challenge of performing services in honor of people I never had the opportunity to know by working with their survivors to create something meaningful and personal. This work takes more time and preparation but I am frequently told by people after a service, "I felt like you knew him/her as well as I did."

The best work is done before a person dies, so I encourage people of all ages and degrees of health to leave some sort of instructions to their loved ones on how they want to be remembered. I am available to consult for these preparations even when ultimately I may not be used to perform the ceremony.

My specialty is creating meaningful and uplifting services in the face of unthinkable tragedy. I have experience in suicide, homicide, multiple homicide, accidental death, traumatic terminal injury, sudden terminal illness, the death of children, and addiction related death. Whether the service attendance less than a dozen or more than a thousand, I give the same amount of thoughtful care.

I am also available for pastoral care in the face of ongoing bereavement. I am an ordained and licensed Unitarian Universalist minister but most of my work is with people who are not currently affiliated with any religious organization. I will thoroughly discuss with you your beliefs and values so as to best create a service reflecting them.

As of 2014, I lead a Bereavement Support Group at Metropolitan Community Church of Richmond from 5:15 to 6:30 PM on Tuesdays. The group is open to all and is at times spiritual but not religious. The church is accessible from multiple bus lines and the entrance to the group is on Davis Avenue.