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The Tree of Remembrance will showcase ornaments with the names of those who passed during 2014. Anyone's name may be added to the tree. To request an ornament for a loved one, call the Bauer-Hillis Funeral Home at 814-473-3080.
Ornaments will be placed on the Tree of Remembrance following the holiday grief program, "Surviving the Season," that is sponsored by Bauer-Hillis Funeral Home and Clarion Forest VNA Hospice. The event will be held Tuesday, December 2, at 7 p.m. at the funeral home and will offer guidance on remembering loved ones and dealing with the sometimes overwhelming combination of grief and stress that can occur during the holidays. All who are interested are welcome to attend.
"The holidays are really tough for those who have lost loved ones, and we wanted to give residents a way to memorialize them during the Christmas season," said Jennifer Bauer Eroh, manager and funeral director at Bauer-Hillis. "This is a wonderful way for families in the community to remember those who passed throughout the year and can be a very healing experience for some."
An ad featuring all the names of those served by Bauer-Hillis throughout the year will run in the Thursday, December 18 edition of the Leader Vindicator. The tree will stay up at the Bauer-Hillis Funeral Home until Friday, January 2, 2015; all families that would like to keep their loved one's ornament will need to collect them by that date.
"Our funeral home is happy that we were able to honor the local veterans and use this as one way for our organization to show our appreciation," said Jack Bauer, owner of the Bauer-Hillis Funeral Home of Petrolia and Rimersburg. "There is no way we can possibly thank them enough for their sacrifice, but we hope they enjoyed their morning."
Funeral directors Larry Bliss, Jack Bauer, Jennifer Bauer Eroh, Joshua Starr and Mark Thompson, and funeral intern John W. Bauer, Jr. attended the Rimersburg breakfast, and before the veterans were served a delicious breakfast of pancakes and sausage, Thompson said the blessing.
The Petrolia breakfast was attended by funeral directors Jack Bauer, Larry Bliss and Joshua Starr, and funeral intern John W. Bauer, Jr. The men there enjoyed a breakfast of scrambled eggs, toast, bacon, sausage and home fries, and Starr said the blessing.
Starr also thanked them for their past military service and present service to local families in performing military honors. "Performing military honors may seem like an everyday task," said Starr, "but it means the world to the families we serve."
Each veteran in attendance at both breakfasts was also presented with a coffee mug that featured the logo of each of their organizations.
"Our staff often works with the local veterans and we are so thankful of all they do for not only us, but for the community," said Bauer. "I am proud to work with a group of men so dedicated to serving our country and our town."
Attendees will enjoy mouth-watering appetizers, tossed salad, a pasta buffet and a delicious dessert. Following lunch, the Kittanning Senior Chorus, under the direction of Monica Stango, will perform holiday songs and before leaving, guests can tour the sanctuary of the church and see the exquisite Tiffany windows.
Attendees are to meet at 11:30 a.m. at Grace Presbyterian Church, 155 North Jefferson St., Kittanning. Parking and the entrance are in the back of the church. The cost is $25. Call Sandy at 724-545-9464, 724-756-2710 or 814-473-3080 for reservations; money and reservations are due by Monday, December 1, 2014. Make checks payable to Bauer Funeral Home and mail to PO Box 997, Kittanning, PA 16201. Guests are welcome.
Bauer Steps Ahead offers a way to stay connected with the community and anyone interested is welcome to join. Read about past excursions on the website or become a fan on Facebook.
The Rev. Sue Evans, RN, BA, Bereavement Coordinator, the Rev. Randy Evans, BA, Hospice Chaplain, and Debbie Lucas, MA, NCC, LPC, Bereavement Counselor, all of Clarion Forest VNA Hospice, will offer guidance on remembering loved ones and dealing with the sometimes overwhelming combination of grief and stress that can occur during the holidays. Also participating in the program will be Pastor Joe Olkowski of Zion Church.
The Blue Christmas program acknowledges the pain and sadness many people experience as the holidays approach, but also encourages people to move toward hope.
"It's about facing the reality that the holidays can be the toughest time of the year for some people," said Jennifer Bauer Eroh, manager of Bauer-Hillis Funeral Home. "This service comes out of a need to fill a special niche during this holiday season; to help people find comfort and still share in the season, even though they may still carry a bit of sadness with them during the holidays."
"We all grieve differently, but most find the journey through it eased by sharing the grief with others," said Pastor Joe Olkowski. "We tend to be so private that we do ourselves harm — especially in times of loss. I tell people, 'You're among friends and people who understand, so share the load you feel.'"
Those who attend are asked to bring an ornament in memory of their loved one. The ornaments will be returned following the program.
The public is encouraged to attend this special holiday remembrance program, which will include the singing of songs, a brief inspirational message and a candle lighting ceremony. Light refreshments will be served following the program. Reservations are requested but not required and there is no admission fee. Please contact the staff at Bauer-Hillis Funeral Home at 724-756-2710 for questions or to make a reservation.
Jenna Rhodaberger, MSW, LSW, Bereavement Coordinator and Medical Social Worker of the VNA Hospice and Palliative Care, will offer guidance on remembering loved ones and dealing with the sometimes overwhelming combination of grief and stress that can occur during the holidays.
The public is encouraged to attend this special holiday remembrance and bereavement support program. Reservations are requested but not required and there is no admission fee. Light refreshments will be served following the program. Please contact the staff at Bauer Family Funeral Homes at 724-545-9464 to advise us the number of guests who will be attending.