|Bereaved Parents Watering Hole
|Hello, and welcome — though I’m sorry to meet you here, if it’s for the
I’m Jody Glynn Patrick. My son Daniel, forever 16, died in a car accident. He was returning
home from the orthodontist’s office, his braces just removed. Perhaps he was looking at his
new smile in the rear view mirror when he meandered onto loose gravel on the shoulder of a
country road. I’ll never really know.
At the time of his death, I handled the death notifications for all shifts of a suburban
Milwaukee police department in my role as a police crisis interventionist and bereavement
counselor. I had done countless notifications, seen more dead bodies than I’d ever hoped to
encounter in a lifetime. Yet nothing (not training, not experience) prepared me for the death
of my own child.
Today, I’m publisher of a Madison, Wisconsin business magazine, a radio talk show host,
and book author. I’m president of a genealogical research company. And yet still and
always, always, I will remain a bereaved mother.
Perhaps you and I both belong to a club that no one wants to join; if so, let’s meet informally
here, whenever you’re up to it, and (as all grief counselors suggest) tell the stories.
By Vesna Vuynovich Kovach; Cover story for ANEW [Now titled BRAVA Magazine], August 2005
The 2005 ATHENA® Award recipient’s lifetime of helping others, despite struggles of her own