Tidewell Hospice Accepts Gift from 35th Annual Powder Puff Charity Golf Classic

(Left to Right) Marlene Arthur, Powder Puff Board Member; Connie Gean, Powder Puff Board Member; Suzanne Barksdale, Tidewell Hospice Community Relations Representative; Shirley Cook, Powder Puff Board Member; Stacy Jones, Community Relations Director for Kays-Ponger & Uselton Funeral Homes and Cremation Services; Denise Pope, Tidewell Chief Philantrophy Officer; Mark Faulkner, PGA Professional Port Charlotte Golf Club; Louise Alford, Powder Puff Board Member; Lois Bell, Powder Puff Board Member; Jerry Sandman, Powder Puff Board Member

The Powder Puff Charity Golf Classic committee recently presented a check for $8,064 to Tidewell Hospice Chief Philanthropy Officer Denise Pope. Each year, the group donates tournament proceeds to support programs and services for Tidewell’s patients and their loved ones.

Held annually at the Port Charlotte Golf Club, the Power Puff Charity Golf Classic began in 1976 and has grown to become the premier amateur ladies’ tournament in Southwest Florida. To learn more, visit www.powderpuffcharitygolfclassic.com.


We’ve Remodeled

We’ve renovated our Punta Gorda and Port Charlotte locations, making them warm and welcoming venues to host a unique farewell for your loved one. Whether you want a traditional service or a Celebration of Life complete with a champagne toast, we’ve got the facilities to accommodate your wishes. Stop by and see our new look.


Articles: Talk to Your Kids About the Boston Marathon Bombing

MarathonRooseveltMemeTragedy can be difficult on children, and often parents are unsure how to discuss it with their children. In light of the Boston Marathon Bombing, many resources have are available to help parents talk with their children about the bombing.

You are encouraged to sign our online tribute to express your support for those impacted by the Boston Marathon Bombing.


Memory Anchors

Thank you to Hello Grief and Bill Cushnie for this article.

Recalling pleasant and life-forming memories can be so very important when we have lost someone we love. A fear some people hold is that over time memories will fade away, and while this is partially true, significant memories stay with us for a lifetime. Lots of every day bits of interaction do fade and this is because they were really not important at the time –a conversation on what to have for dinner or the need to take the trash out, or what the weather forecast is for the week. However, many memories are anchored so firmly in our senses we need not fear we will forget. Here’s a personal story:

My oldest son had a good friend in college; that friend had been blind from age five and the only colors he could remember were bright orange and bright green. His friend, Mike, had a bicycle built for two so a person with sight could sit in front and steer while he could enjoy the ride and peddle in back. My son and Mike painted the bike fluorescent orange and green. One fine spring day they went out for a ride and Mike said, “Is it a pretty day?” and my son answered, “It’s an absolutely gorgeous day.” Now any time my son sees a bicycle built for two or his wife says, “Isn’t this a pretty day!” And on the first lovely day in spring; guess what memory floods his mind.

Now just a few things about memory anchors –hopefully not too technical, but important. Anchors may be visual (bicycle), auditory (birds singing), kinesthetic (peddling) or a combination. Combinations are the strongest. For example; a woman who lost her brother, when he was just seventeen at the time and she was fourteen, remembers her brother’s birthdays vividly because his favorite cake was not a cake, but a cream filled donut with a single candle on top that represented all birthdays, and the birthday song that was sung by his musical family was done in beautiful harmony. The anchors are in the sight of a donut and candle, the smell of the donut and the hearing of the song –visual, kinesthetic and auditory. Each year on his birthday the family repeats the ritual and the anchors become even stronger. It doesn’t even have to be a birthday for the memory to appear –just a trip to the donut shop will do it every time.

For me; my mother wore White Shoulders perfume so whenever I smell it I recall memories of her loving spirit and dressing to go out with my dad on a special occasion. My dad enjoyed making things and he was very skillful so whenever I use one of his tools or use the box on my dresser he made I recall memories of helping him in the workshop when I was a young boy. Both of those memories bring a smile to my face and tears to my eyes and trigger other memories. You just don’t forget those things.

I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that some anchors are of unpleasant memories. There are awful examples I am too familiar with in working with bereaved individuals. A quarrel someone had with a loved one the day of their birthday and on that day the person died in an auto accident, or seeing a parent hit the other parent in a dispute over drinking. These can painfully trigger the memories on the birthday or when seeing someone get angry when drinking too much. I have some painful memories from my own life –I suspect we all do. For some of these I’ve sought professional help, for others I’ve managed to forgive if not forget entirely and for others I’ve simply accepted as a part of living and that dwelling on them does not change them, but only diminishes the mostly good things in life and let it go.

When a memory that is anchored in us that makes us feel deeply; it is a message that we are alive. They are opportunities to recall, celebrate and face up to something. While new memory anchors will occur unexpectedly, we also have opportunities to create positive anchors for ourselves, our families and our friends that sustain us all. Perhaps it’s a new a birthday ritual or holiday idea or vacation reunion, event attendance with friends/family, or a memory party during the holidays where we share stories of someone we’ve loved and lost.


Remembering Dad on Father’s Day

Thank you to Hello Grief for this article.

Father’s Day can be a rough holiday when you feel like you are the only one without a dad. It can be tempting to just ignore the day. Instead of pretending Father’s Day doesn’t exist, or doesn’t matter, try to find fun and meaningful ways to make the day a good one.

Here are a few suggestions for ways to remember and celebrate your dad on this special day.

Connect with his friends. Ask them to share a funny story about your dad, or what it was about your dad that made them feel close to him.

Write about your dad and positive things he used to say to you. Buy or make a card that expresses what you’d like to say to you dad, his favorite quotes or write down the positive things he told you.

Watch a movie or TV show that he liked. Think about why your dad enjoyed it, and what he might have said while watching it with you.

Ask other family members to join you in celebrating your dad on Father’s Day. Spend the day with your mom, siblings, grandparents or aunts and uncles. Do something that you all loved doing with your dad.

Find a song that reminds you of your dad, and share it with us. Find a video of a song on YouTube that reminds you of your dad and share the link in the comments below, or on our YouTube channel.

Try one or two of these, or combine them all to design an entire day of celebration. You get to decide how you want to remember your dad, and what you want your own traditions to be.

How will you remember your dad on Father’s Day? Add to the comments section below to share your ideas with us.


The 6 Black Boxes | A Military Widow’s View

The below article was originally posted on http://www.americanwidowproject.com/. The American Widow Project is a non-profit organization dedicated to the new generation of those who have lost the heroes of yesterday, today and tomorrow, with an emphasis on healing through sharing stories, tears and laughter… Military Widow to Military Widow. Thank you to Hello Grief for sharing.


6 boxes are all that is left of my husband. One filled with his socks, another with his uniforms, and another with every card or photo he had received. Three more contain his books, sheets, and other military effects.

I remember when the boxes arrived, I sat there so anxious to see what was left of my baby. Opening each one I had no clue what I would see. Cautiously, I lifted the lid of the hard black containers.

There are the cards I wrote him, there are the movies he’d watch every night, there are the photos of me he had hanging next to his bed………there is the only thing left of my husband’s existence while in Iraq.

I remember opening up his laptop to find an snapshot of me I never knew he liked. There was the bear that had the personal message I had recorded telling him I can’t wait to see him come home and be together again. There were all the things I had sent, all the memories on film we had captured, all the literature he adored reading, now with no reader.

I forgot all that he had accumulated over his 8 months over there. Due to that fact, many items were so heartwarming but always with an aftertaste of anger.

I remember going through his clothes and immediately putting them to my nose……detergent. ‘I’ll try another shirt or maybe his socks!’ …….detergent. The fact that they had washed all of his clothing made me so infuriated! Let me have one last breath of his smell. The smell I was unable to be without for 8 months…..and now forever.

Some of Michael’s things I pulled out right away, others are still sitting in those looming boxes sitting in my garage. Every now in then I’ll open them to get a small inhale from his pillow that they DIDN’T wash, or go for a search for some hidden letter he may have written in the case he would die.

I never found the letter, I never got my husband to come home, and all I am left with are our memories, a few items of meaning and………6 black boxes.


Memorial Day 2011 at Gulf Pines Memorial Park

We had a beautiful day for our Memorial Day Service.

Attendees saying the Pledge of Allegiance

Wreath Presentation

Wreath Presentation

Butterfly Release

Gun Salute

Posting of Colors

Posting of Colors