Published at PO Box 96 124 W. St. Clair Romeo, MI 48065. Phone: (586)752-3524 Fax: (586)752-0548
Updated Wednesday, May 15, 2013 at 3 PM EST
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You are Viewing an Archived IssuePosted: 08/15/12
Above in foreground, Christine DeClerck walks for her son, Kevin. Over her left shoulder are her husband, David, and sons Steven and Eric, all wearing shirts made to honor Kevin. Below, Sue Gillespie, foreground, walked to honor of her daughter, Jamie, who died in May of 2003.
(Photos courtesy of Wendy Willenborg)
First Romeo Walk toAbout 140 people turned out for the first Walk to Remember on July 22 that included members from four Michigan chapters of Compassionate Friends.
Remember draws 140
Compassionate Friends is a non-profit group that provides assistance and comfort to families who have experienced the death of a son or a daughter, a brother or sister, or a grandchild.
Romeo was chosen as a host city for a walk this year that takes place at the same time as the National Conference Walk held in California.
The event was coordinated by Diana Lewno, who lost her daughter, Ashley, a decade ago. She wore her daughter's shoes and a hat decorated with ribbons in memory of her daughter and the other children honored during the two-mile walk.
"Our goal was to try and bring more smiles than tears and I think we did that," said Lewno. "Part of it is to bring awareness of Compassionate Friends as a support group to help heal a family that has experienced the loss of a child. Help is out there. It's a tough road to do alone."
Each participant paid an entry fee of $15 to take part in the walk. All money raised went to the Troy Chapter of Compassionate Friends and will be used to assist and comfort the families of those who lose their young loved ones.
Local help for the event came from the following businesses and organizations:
Uptown Buscemi's (all of the ice used was donated in memory of the owner's son, Ryan Binnon, who died five years ago), Culligan Water, Westview Orchards, Roth-Muir Funeral Home, Pat's II Jewelers (donated pandora bracelet in honor of her daughter Kathy), Romeo Village Florist, Vera's Balloons, Henry Malburg Funeral Home, Sheena's, Connelly's Creations, Sugar Art, Kroger and Lukosavich Chiropractic Center (Shelby).
Local volunteers included: Stacey Peake, Sue Gillespie, Cindy Scharnhorst, Stan and Lisa Babinski and Cathy Vestrand.
Compassionate Friends also coordinates a world-wide candle lighting ceremony on the second Sunday in December at 7 p.m.
"People purchase the candles for lighting and they use the funds to supply educational videos and bring in special speakers," said Lewno.