Some years ago, I met a woman named Stephy Hardman Kaminoff. Stephy had been recently diagnosed with stage 4 cancer. Even with this tragic loss confronting her, knowing that she would eventually lose her life, not to mention the thought of leaving her three precious children behind, she had a resolve that was amazing. She made me believe that she might be the “one” to beat this disease.
After meeting Stephy, I was moved by the devastating loss that she knew her passing would create. Several years prior I had lost my husband to the horrific events of September 11th and my loss seemed to pale in comparison to what Stephy was experiencing. Stephy’s grief was unimaginable. I reflected on how lucky I was to have had the support of our “New Life Support Group” and how we had a place to go. The upper room at Holy Cross became “Our Place" where we would meet Tuesday mornings at 9:30. This was a place where we felt safe. I was determined that someday, with the help of my friends from our New Life Support Group, we would provide a place for people who are grieving. People who are suffering from loss, any loss. They too, would have a Place.
On April 2, 2014 Stephy passed on, leaving her three children in the care of her wonderful sisters.
In the Spring of 2015, I brought Stephy’s story to our New Life Support Group, where I expressed my desire to open a place for all who suffer the loss of a loved one, and I wanted their help. There was no hesitation. We would start this endeavor. Stephy’s Place: A New Life Support Center for Grief and Loss officially opened September 1, 2015. At Stephy's Place, we offer Support Groups and mindful meditation free of charge.