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Responding to the Tucson Tragedy in Your Community

 

The terrible events the nation witnessed in the parking lot of a Tucson, Arizona, grocery store on January 8, 2011 were shocking and incomprehensible.


Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of those who died: Christina Taylor Green, Dorothy Morris, Judge John Roll, Phyllis Schneck, Dorwan Stoddard and Gabe Zimmerman. Also in our hearts are those who were injured and those who witnessed this tragic event; we pray for their healing in both body and mind.

 


As funeral directors, you may encounter people in your community who, while not directly affected by Saturday's events, may be struggling to make sense of everything in their own minds. We would like to share tips and remind you about the NFDA resources available to you that may help you, as a community leader, reach out and offer comfort.

  • When national tragedies occur, many people may feel a sense of loss or confusion as they struggle to make sense of what happened. As you well understand, this grief must be expressed to begin the healing process. Every community has a place to mourn and remember together – your funeral home. You may wish to help your local community members share their feelings and provide a central location to pay their respects to those who died.
    • Place a condolence book(s) in your lobby and invite members of the community to offer their condolences to the families of those who died. Alternatively, you could reserve an area of your website to commemorate the deceased and invite community members to express their condolences. The condolence book(s) or a printout of the condolence messages from your website can be forwarded to the families.
    • Host a memorial service at your funeral home honoring those who died. Collaborate with local clergy, public officials and other businesses or other organizations that may wish to participate.
  • Remind local schools, churches, synagogues and mosques, and other appropriate community organizations about your funeral home's grief resources (grief library, grief counselors, etc.). Encourage them to call you and offer any assistance you can provide.
  • Suggest to teachers that their students write letters (or draw pictures) for students at the school Christina Green, the 9-year-old who died, attended. Your funeral home could provide the supplies (paper, pencils, pens, crayons, etc.) to the school, collect the letters and pictures, and mail them to the school.
  • Grief resources for adults:
  • Grief resources for children and teens:
  • Grief-related organizations
  • NFDA Funeral Service Help Line (for consumers): 800-228-6332. Offers information on a variety of topics, including grief.


If you have questions about any of these suggestions or resources, please call your personal NFDA member services representative at 800-228-6332.