Angel of Hope in St. Charles, MO

Located in a quiet, garden setting, Blanchette Park, St. Charles, Missouri is home to the National Share Office Angel of Hope. The angel’s face is that of a child, its arms raised as a child waiting to be lifted. In its wing is inscribed the word, Hope. The Angel of Hope, an exact replica of the Christmas Box Angel statue, located in Salt Lake City, Utah, stands as a symbol of hope for all parents who have experienced the death of a child.

To honour our children’s memories, memorial bricks are being placed around the base of the Angel of Hope statue with separate walkways extending in various directions from the base of the statue. The statue and surrounding area are intended to be a place of peace and healing for all bereaved parents.

The memorial bricks are placed around the Angel of Hope twice a year in a brick dedication ceremony, held in April, before Mother’s Day and Father’s Day, and in November, in time for the holiday season.

New Walkway Dedicated

     There is also a new St. Louis Cardinals Care Walkway, dedicated at the Angel of Hope statue in September 2005.  This walkway was made possible because of a generous grant from the St. Louis Cardinals’ Care and was also partially funded by Richards Brick and RES-COM Construction.  The Angel of Hope monument was dedicated in October 1998 and 1000 bricks were placed around its base for bereaved families to memorialize their deceased children.  Brick placement services have been held each spring and fall since the monument’s dedication. The amount of available memorial brick space for families around the angel had become less, so it was determined a new walkway needed to be constructed. With a grant donation from Cardinals Care, decreased labour and material costs from RES-COM and Richard’s Brick this became a reality. The walkway is a beautiful pathway to the Angel of Hope which is visited every hour of every day. The dedication ceremony was very meaningful with a few words from Cathi Lammert, our executive director, a reading, We Remember Them and the song, My Name by internationally known country singer, George Canyon.

Annual Candlelight Vigil

     Every December 6, a candlelight vigil is held at all Angel Monuments around the country.  The vigil is a wonderful remembrance of children who have died and is held during the holiday season, which can be a difficult time for bereaved families and friends.  This touching service is very well attended and is a very moving memorial.   It is traditional to bring a white rose to leave at the base of the Angel.

How to Purchase a Memorial Brick

Memorial bricks for the National Share Office Angel may be purchased for a $100.00 donation. All bricks are 4 x 8 inches, with three lines available for engraving – 15 characters per line, including spacing. All engraving is done in upper case letters. Along with purchasing a permanent memorial for your child, you will receive a certificate of ownership. Bricks will continue to be sold on a space-available basis and added to the walkway. Orders for Spring placement must be received by March 20 and orders for Fall placement must be received by September 20. The funds collected from the sale of the memorial bricks are used for the installation of the walkway and the upkeep of the statue and surrounding area.

Directions to Blanchette Park:

  1. From Highway 70 in St. Charles, exit 5th Street North.
  2. Go several miles down 5th Street, past St. Joseph Health Center and St. Charles Borromeo Church.
  3. At Randolph (which is a 4-way stop sign), turn left.  Follow Randolph to Blanchette Park (there is a flower shop across the street). 
  4. The second entrance has a parking lot nearest the Angel Monument.

Spring Is Upon Us!

As the trees and flowers begin to bud and the green grass pops up everywhere, some of you may struggle with this season of a resurgence as it can feel as if life is moving on. Your grieving heart may still feel blanketed with the dark days of winter. Spring is often called the season of hope, and some of you may be unable to find any hopeful moments. You may not feel any excitement in the change of season. Others of you are possibly thankful the winter months are ending, and the change of seasons can feel like a new beginning. Perhaps you feel a glimmer of hope and have a newfound energy.

This time of year, it can be helpful to begin planning a vacation for the summer. As the days become warmer and longer, taking a day trip in a relaxing environment close to home can be rejuvenating and refreshing to the soul. You may find it peaceful and healing to your spirit to begin planning a special garden in memory of your baby. Even something as simple as a short daily walk around your neighbourhood is a nice way to take a break from the daily routine. However you are feeling, and whatever you decide to do in the coming warmer months, take time to do what you need to do to nourish your body and spirit. Be present to where you need to be, and feel what you need to feel. And know that you are not alone.

Share provides free information and grief support to those who have experienced an early pregnancy loss, stillbirth or infant death. Below you will find clear explanations of each type of loss as well as some answers to common questions about the grief process.  Information packets are available upon request.

What is an Early Pregnancy Loss?

Medically, an early pregnancy loss is defined as any loss before 20 weeks gestation, with most of these losses occurring before the thirteenth week. The death of a baby before the thirteenth week is called a first-trimester loss and most commonly occurs because of a problem with the development of the baby or placenta. Many people consider losses early in the second-trimester stillbirths since often labour needs to be induced so the baby can be delivered.

Types of Early Pregnancy Loss:

threatened miscarriage means you have symptoms of a miscarriage, such as bleeding and/or cramping, but no miscarriage has occurred, and your cervix is closed. This does not mean you will definitely lose the baby, as half of all women who have these symptoms go on to deliver full-term babies.

An inevitable miscarriage means you have symptoms such as bleeding and cramping, but you may also pass some tissue. An examination shows that your cervix is open, and this indicates that you will probably miscarry.

An incomplete miscarriage may occur if you experience severe cramping and bleeding. This suggests that there could be small parts of the placenta and/or baby still in your uterus. You may require hospitalization and a D & C (dilation and curettage) if this happens. During a D & C, the doctor will dilate your cervix and remove the tissue, baby, and blood lining your uterus. This procedure will either be done in a hospital under general anaesthesia or in your doctor’s office with local anaesthesia.

A missed miscarriage is the discovery through ultrasound that your baby has died, but you have no symptoms of a miscarriage. You may eventually miscarry on your own, require a D & C, or be given a prescription that will cause you to miscarry. You may also be sent home to wait for a natural miscarriage with no intervention.

blighted ovum is a common cause of early pregnancy loss. This means a placenta developed and produced the pregnancy hormones, but due to an abnormality with the fertilized egg, the fetus did not develop or failed earlier than the first six weeks. On ultrasound, there is only evidence of a gestational sac. Your body may have reabsorbed the baby early in pregnancy. If a natural miscarriage does not happen, you may need a D & C or other medical treatment.

An ectopic or tubal pregnancy occurs when, instead of attaching to your uterus, the fertilized egg attaches itself to a fallopian tube or some other place inside your abdomen. Usually, the first sign of an ectopic pregnancy is severe pain in the abdomen, with or without bleeding. If you have an ectopic or tubal pregnancy, your doctor may give you a drug called Methotrexate to dissolve the pregnancy. However, you may require surgery.

chemical pregnancy is another special type of early pregnancy loss. Sometimes, because of infertility issues, a woman is closely monitored from the time of ovulation. HCG levels may rise, indicating conception has occurred, and then drop off, meaning the pregnancy was not viable. This may all happen before a menstrual period is even missed.

What is a stillbirth?

A stillbirth is the delivery of a baby who has died and is greater than 20 weeks gestation. In about half of all stillbirths, a cause for the baby’s death can be discovered after evaluating the baby. It is possible for the baby to have birth defects or problems with the placenta or umbilical cord. Another cause can be found in maternal circumstances such as an illness or recreational drug use. Unfortunately, for many stillbirths, the cause for the baby’s death can remain undetermined. Stillbirth cannot be predicted, nor can we predict whom it will affect.

What is a neonatal loss?

A neonatal loss is the death of a baby who was born alive and died shortly after birth. The baby may have lived for a few days, a few hours or only minutes. The baby may have died for a variety of reasons, including prematurity, infection, defects of major organs or chromosomal abnormalities. The baby’s life-threatening condition may or may not have been detectable before birth. The grief process may be impacted by the gestation of the pregnancy, and when problems were detected.

Whether you are parents who learned before or after birth, that your baby may die, the initial feelings you experience are very similar. You now have to go from the highs of awaiting a precious baby, to the lows of deep grief. Your emotions and feelings may be constantly changing with the circumstances of your loss.

Questions about Grief

For many families, the instant you knew you were pregnant, your life changed forever.  Whether you were feeling joy or apprehension, this new baby was an important part of your future.  The feelings you have after the death of a baby can be overwhelming and intense, as the death of a baby at any stage is a very real loss.  You will not only begin a journey of recovering physically but also emotionally and spiritually.

The following are frequently asked questions of bereaved parents, family, and friends.  They have been provided as a source of some of the questions you may have, and also to realize the normalcy of all the emotions and fears you may experience during your grief journey.

Parent’s Grief

I feel like I am sad all the time.  Is this normal?

Experiencing the death of a baby can be shocking, and the many emotions you have may be overwhelming.  The intense feelings of your grief will not last forever; there will come a time when the heartache is less painful.  It is important for you to know that what you are feeling is normal for you.  Give yourself permission to grieve.  Intense feelings associated with grief can last up to 2 years, but not all that time is spent in deep grief.  Incorporating your loss into daily life takes patience and time.

Is it normal to feel like I am going crazy?

Grief can be tiring and overwhelming…  There are so many emotions associated with grief.  It is very unlikely that you will experience grief in stages or as steps.  You might experience a range of emotions at different times, or re-experience an emotion you have already felt.  There is no right or wrong way to move through your feelings.

You may feel…

  • Overwhelming Shock
  • Confusion
  • Low Self-Esteem
  • Loss of Control
  • Disappointment
  • Jealousy
  • Anger
  • Guilt and/or Self-Blame
  • Frustration
  • Sadness and/or Depression
  • Physically symptoms related to Hormonal Changes

Finding ways to express your grief and finding support can help you feel less “crazy.” When a baby dies, so many expectations and hopes were shattered, and now you are finding ways to put the pieces of life back together when some of them don’t fit anymore.  For some bereaved parents, attending support meetings and connecting with other bereaved parents helps lessen the feelings of loneliness or “craziness.”

Is it normal to feel so tired?  How can I feel better?

Your health and wellness are important to positive grieving.  Your doctor will give you specific directions for your physical aftercare.  Taking care of your physical health is just as important as taking care of your emotional and spiritual health.  You may experience mood swings, fatigue, insomnia, inability to concentrate or irritability.  Your energy levels may not be consistent, as well as your appetite.  Eating a balanced diet, drinking plenty of water, and maintaining a regular rest routine is important.  There are many support resources out there to help you find some comfort.  Sometimes a good friend with great listening skills will help, as well as support groups, or online organizations.  You may also feel a need for spiritual bonds during this time.  Contact clergy or simply set aside time for reflection or relaxation.  Some people enjoy reading and writing, or journaling your experience could be part of their healing process.

It seems like my spouse isn’t grieving for our baby.  Why are we so different?

The death of a baby can be difficult for both parents.  It is important to give yourself permission to grieve the way you need to grieve and to allow the same for your spouse.  You and your partner may have similar feelings, yet you may feel miles apart.  You may even have difficulty understanding how your partner is grieving even though you both lost this baby.  As much as some people would like one, there is not a step-by-step process for grieving.  Everyone grieves differently.  Some people are quiet in their grief, choosing solitary activities.  Others may be more expressive in how they show grief and maybe more assertive in grieving, such as sharing openly, crying, or sharing and making memories.  For the quiet griever, they may be perceived as cold and irritable, or even depressed.  Your partner may wonder why you don’t feel the same emotions at the same time.  You may need to take a long walk alone, while your partner may need to be held and hear that you are sad too.  It is normal to question your spouse, or for your spouse to question where you are in your grief.  People want to know that they are all right and that you are too.  Finding ways to express to your partner how you grieve or what you need to get through the death of your baby is invaluable to your relationship.

I am just too sad to be intimate with my partner.  Will I ever feel better?

It is sometimes difficult to bear the weight of several strong emotions at the same time.  Everyone is different when it comes to being intimate again with his or her partner.  Your doctor will give you direction on your healthcare and guidelines for sexual intercourse.  He or she may permit intimacy with your spouse, but you may not be ready.  You may have fears of how it may feel, future pregnancy, or allowing yourself to feel good.  Being hesitant is normal, but giving yourself permission to love and be loved is important, whether intercourse is involved or not.  It is important to communicate with your spouse your fears or feelings as to why it’s just not comfortable yet.  It is normal also to have the same feelings after having intercourse.  You may cry or want to be alone.  These more intense feelings you may have will lessen with time.  Listen to your body and your heart to decide what is right for you.

Nobody seems to understand that I am still grieving, what can I do?

It is difficult for someone who has never lost a baby to comprehend what you are going through.  Some people may not know what to say to you or understand the intimate relationship you and your baby already had since they were not able to experience the same tangible bond while you were pregnant.  The best way to deal with others when you are grieving is, to be honest, and tell people what you need.  Some bereaved parents have found it helpful to write notes or letters to the family or friends explaining their circumstances surrounding their loss and what they needed from them.  Sometimes people can be surprised at the depth of your feelings.  Even if others are having a difficult time understanding your loss, allow yourself time to remember and honour your precious baby.

How do I cope with other people?  How will my coworkers understand when I go back to work?

Even for someone who has experienced the loss of a baby, your experience is different and unique.  Many times they don’t know what to say and don’t understand you lost a part of you, including the future you were planning together.  They may say things they feel are comforting, but make you angry.  Most people are not trying to be insensitive to you; they just don’t truly understand the impact the death of your baby had on you.   The best way to communicate with your friends, family, and coworkers when you are grieving is to be honest and specific in what you need.  If you are not a verbal person, write a note telling them how you feel, what you have been through, or how you need to be supported.  Depending on the relationships you have built, going back to work may be difficult.  It is normal to have feelings of confusion, crying, having difficult days, or having trouble concentrating.  Grief can make a normal day of work unbearable.  Do your best to find appropriate ways to communicate your needs as a grieving parent and coworker/friend.  As you continue grieving and remembering your baby, days will begin to fall into a new normal pattern.

Grandparent’s Grief

Why does the death of my grandchild hurt so much?

A grandparent’s grief can be a complicated journey. Your grief is twofold.  Not only are you mourning the loss of your grandchild, but you have also lost a part of your son or daughter that will never be the same.  Many grandparents feel a sense of helplessness because they are unable to prevent the anguish their own child feels.  Life may now seem more fragile and unfair than ever.  These feelings may be frustrating, but they are completely normal for grandparents and family to feel as they, too, experience the loss of this baby.

I don’t know what to do or say.  How can I support my son or daughter?

Sometimes there is just nothing to say.  Just be quiet, be with them, hold their hand, touch their shoulder, or give them a hug.  If you can’t find the right words way, “I’m sorry,” or “I just don’t know what to say.”  Avoid clichés like “Thank goodness you are young, you can have more children,” or “God wouldn’t give you more than you can handle.”  What may seem comforting to you may be very hurtful to them.

Check up on your son or daughter.  Be specific in your offer to help.  Perhaps offer to run errands, provide food, or do laundry.  After a few weeks, people generally don’t stop by as often.  Parents need a reminder that they are not alone.

One misconception is that the shorter the baby’s life, the easier the grief process.  The opposite is true.  Chances are your child is grieving not only the loss of his or her baby but their pregnancy or hopes and dreams for the future.  Acknowledge the baby by using his or her name.  This shows you value the short life of your grandchild.

Avoid giving advice.  There are no rules that define how one should feel or how soon one will return to the norms of daily life.  Your child needs to be heard without feeling judged or receiving unwanted advice.  Grief can make people more sensitive and vulnerable. 

It is very difficult to watch your own child grieve, and after some time you may wonder why they have not gotten better.  The parents of a baby that dies need more time to grieve, as the average intense grieving period could be up to 24 months.  Parents will go through ups and downs during this time, but allowing them time and being patient will help them grieve.

Remember special dates or holidays.  Parents, and grandparents, may be saddened by special events or dates like birthdays, due dates, delivery dates, Mother’s or Fathers’ Day, because it is a reminder that their baby is not here.  Acknowledge how difficult these days maybe without the baby, and ask how they are doing.  Showing your recognition with hugs, cards, gifts, or special remembrances also helps to create special mementoes.
How do I talk to my son or daughter about the future?

The future is best held in the hands and hearts of your son or daughter.  Allow them to share their thoughts on future pregnancies or children without pressure or prodding.  Even though you may have good intentions, encouraging or implying that parents should have more children may make the parents feel as though you are minimizing their loss.  When the time is right, your son or daughter will share with you their plans, and it will be all right to share your emotions.  Just remember, whether or not there are more children in the future for your son or daughter, it is important to remember and honour your grandchild that died.

Children’s Grief

How can I support my grieving child(ren)?

Children want to share their experience of grief with adults.  Your child’s love for the baby may be very special, and it will be pharma sust 500 unique as to how much they were included during the pregnancy/birth.  Open-ended questions can help you talk and listen to what your child feels.  You can ask, “How does that make you feel?” or “What would you like to do for the baby?”

Children need honesty, not deception when it comes to sharing sad news.  Generally, children find ways to cope with grief.  It is important to refrain from using clichés, half-truths, and fairy tales that may not explain the mystery of death.  Remember that children think literally.  Using phrases like “we lost the baby, “ the baby is sleeping with God,” “the baby went on a long trip,” or “the baby is watching over you now” can be confusing because of the literal meaning of the phrases.  Use an honest explanation like, “The baby died.  That means her heart stopped beating and her body doesn’t work anymore.  She is not with us like she used to, but we will always remember and love her very much.” explains literally what happened.  Use simple and honest explanations.

Allow your child to ask questions.  Younger children tend to need to repeat the same question again and again.  Each time you repeat the answer or story honestly, you are allowing your child to understand it more deeply.  Because you too are grieving, this may be a frustrating process. Do your best to be patient and open, as children learn how to cope from your sincere feelings, actions and responses to their questions.

How will I know if my child needs more help than I can give?

Children, just as you, will grieve and heal over time.  Additional help can come from extended family, close friends, teachers, counsellors, social workers, therapists, etc.  You may want to seek professional counselling if you have any serious concerns, or if your child…

  • Pretends nothing happened
  • Develops a fear of school or school work dramatically declines
  • Threatens suicide
  • Frequently panics or shows excessive anxiety
  • Physically assaults other people or is cruel to animals
  • Behaves poorly with family members
  • Becomes involved in drugs or alcohol
  • Begins committing seriously social delinquent acts
  • Is unwilling or unable to socialize with other children

Friend’s Grief

I’ve never experienced the loss of a baby.  What am I supposed to do to make my friends feel better?

No matter what you say or do, there is nothing that will make your friends “feel better.”  Fortunately, there are some ideas that will help you be a part of their experience and will help them through their grief.

If you don’t know what to say, don’t say anything.  Sometimes just being with them or offering a hug is enough.  It’s all right not to know what to say.  Say, “I’m sorry this happened,” or “This is so awful, I don’t know what to say.”
Respond to your friends’ grief just as if one another member of their family had died.  Send flowers, sympathy cards, share special remembrances, make a phone call, make or bring dinner.  Even though this baby’s life was short, your friends lost their hopes and future too.

It’s been a couple of months.  Why aren’t my friends over the loss of their baby?

The death of a baby is very sad and life-altering.  The intense grieving can take up to 24 months, not all of them spent in deep sadness.  The best thing for you to do is help them through their grief.  Ask sincerely, “How are you?” and be ready to listen.  Sometimes parents can verbalize what they need from you, so you will know what you can do or say to comfort them.

Do your best to acknowledge the baby that has died by using his or her name.  This will show you value the short life of their baby and that he or she is not forgotten.

Grieving parents may be saddened at certain times of the year or by special events, like birthdays, due dates, delivery dates, Mother’s or Father’s Day because they are reminded that their baby is not here.  Your friends need your support and acknowledgement during these days.

After a while, people stop calling or dropping by, which can be a lonely time because they may feel that people have forgotten their baby.  Make a call or write them a note to let them know you care.


The following provides resources and information for caregivers and professionals to enhance the support of parents experiencing the death of a baby during early pregnancy, at birth, or in the first few months of life.

Professional Articles, Statements & Resources

Grieving in the NICU: Mending Broken Hearts When a Baby Dies video

Mending Broken Hearts When a Baby Dies is the first program from the Grieving in the NICU series. It is an 80-minute chaptered video on DVD that focuses solely on parents, helping them with their bereavement.

The video is designed to help caregivers play an integral part in the lives of parents faced with the death of a baby. Two distinct phases of grief are recognized, “Shock and Intense Grief” and “Picking Up the Pieces.” Grief experiences are shared by parents, grandparents, siblings, and grief counseling experts in this comprehensive and valuable resource. 

Now available in the online catalog.  Please call the National Office at 800-821-6819 to order over the phone.  Read the positive, in-depth review of this video in the May/June edition of  Neonatal Network: The Journal of Neonatal Nursing.

New Research Findings for SIDS

SIDS No Longer a Mystery – New Research Identifies a Potential Biological Cause
Researchers Hope to Develop a Diagnostic Test to Identify Newborns at Risk

We-Based Resources provided by AWHONN

Web-based Resources for Health Care Providers and Women Following Pregnancy Loss © 2006, AWHONN, the Association of Women’s Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses, was printed in the JOGNN Principles & Practice.

PLIDA Infection Risk Position Statement 

Pregnancy and Infant Death Alliance Position Statement evaluating

the risk of infection between bereaved parents and their baby.

PLIDA Pathology Study Position Statement

Pregnancy and Infant Death Alliance Position Statement evaluating the length of time a bereaved parent spends with their baby and its effect on postmortem pathology studies.

Archive Caring Notes Articles

Selected articles from a former Share publication for group leaders, caregivers, and professionals.

Bereavement Care and Rights

  • The Rights of Parents
  • For the Ultrasound Technician
  • The Value of Creating Memories
  • Helpful Hints for Caregivers – From Share Message Boards
  • Planning a Holiday or Memorial Service

Continuing Professional Care

Please check back at a later date for more information or check our Events Around the Nation for additional training information.

Share Groups

National Share testo enan amp Office – St. Charles, MO

Support Group Meetings


The National Share Office hosts local support meetings at 402 Jackson in St. Charles, MO.  Meetings do not require membership, are free and are open to bereaved parents who have experienced the death of a baby due to early pregnancy loss, stillbirth, or in the first few months of life.  Friends and family of the bereaved are also welcome to attend.  Each meeting begins with introductions, followed by a topic of discussion, and then open sharing.  Interaction among the group is encouraged, however, no one is required to participate more than what is comfortable.   The group is facilitated by Cathi Lammert with the assistance of a Share Companion.  The meeting lasts 1 1/2 to 2 hours, and child care is not provided.  Upcoming National Share Support Group Meetings are held on the second Tuesday of each month at 7:00 p.m.

Subsequent Choices Support Meetings


The Subsequent Choices Support Meeting is held on the fourth Thursday of each month at 7:00 p.m.  This meeting encompasses issues surrounding your choices after the loss of a baby, including, but not limited to, subsequent pregnancy and adoption.

Loss of a Multiple Birth Support Meetings


The Loss in a Multiple Pregnancy Group does not hold separate meetings.  A representative with multiple loss experiences will attend our regular support meetings on the second Tuesday of the month and provide phone support with the parents and families who have these needs.

Loss & Grief

Helpful information about Infant & Pregnancy Loss and Grief Resources.

Types of Loss

Early Pregnancy Loss
Stillbirth – When a Baby is Born Still
Neonatal – The Loss of a Newborn

Grief Resources

  • DOWNLOADS:  Visit our downloadable forms page for informational tri-Folds in English and Spanish
  • ONLINE CATALOG:  Visit our online catalog for additional resources, including books and gifts.

Healing from Helping

Share receives many calls from bereaved parents who want to reach out and help other hurting parents.  Some of those who call are newly bereaved.  Some of them have been so touched by the support they received that they want to give back to others.  Calls also come from folks who have not received the support they needed at the time of their loss and want to make changes in their community

I understand the urgency to reach out to another person after your loss.  Shortly after Christopher died, I wanted to change my nursing position to obstetrics and to start a Share group all at the same time.  I began the process but I could not complete the goals I had envisioned.  I became physically sick from trying to do too much.  My husband, Chuck & I had to start over and focus on our personal grieving needs.  I still had the yearning to start a Share group but I gave the seedling to the nurses, chaplain and AMEND peer counsellor who had supported us.  I was grateful for their support and willingness to be a part of this important effort in our area.  Two years later a Share group was established and Chuck & I were able to assist these caregivers as facilitators.  Also, four years later I knew I was ready to pursue that change in my nursing career to labour & delivery. 

I encourage the newly bereaved to take care of their own needs first.  The needs of newly bereaved parents are many and they deserve top priority.  Supporting another person takes energy and time and often a bereaved person is exhausted from their own feelings of loss.  When I tell people they need to wait for at least 18 months to start a group many of them are surprised by my suggestions and direction.   After they hear the reasons, most begin to understand the importance of their own needs.

As one begins to reach out to others, a sense of peace follows.  In the beginning days of supporting other bereaved parents, Chuck & I would often comment how healing it felt to listen to the stories of their baby/ies.  It was a true honour to be there for the parents but also we found it helpful in our continued healing.  The statement is in giving that we receive was so true!

Over the years I have had the great privilege to witness the growth and healing of many individuals on their journey.   Many people tell me how grateful they are for all Share or their support group gave them.  They feel by giving back to others honours their beloved child. I truly believe every baby that dies leaves a gift for his/her parents.   I see these gifts in action when I see the parents giving back to others.  The following is some of the healing moments I have witnessed:

  • Reaching out to another member of the support group by sharing his initial struggle of his own grief.
  • Going to the funeral home for the first time since their baby’s death to support a friend.
  • Calling the SHARE Office for the newly bereaved to find resources and support.
  • Handing someone who is hurting her phone number.
  • Volunteering endless hours to build an Angel of Hope monument and place memorial bricks.
  • Building oak caskets for miscarried babies.
  • Sewing gowns, caps and blankets for the babies who have died.
  • Sitting with the newly bereaved at the time of their loss.
  • Organizing a fundraiser to support the local/national support group.
  • Distributing SHARE or bereavement materials to doctors, funeral homes.
  • Taking on the state government and succeeding providing the right for burial of all babies regardless of gestation.
  • Planning a county wide Walk to Remember
  • Providing one on one support via the phone, internet
  • Corresponding to newly bereaved in the parent connection section of the newsletter.
  • Planning a holiday memorial service
  • Bringing a newly bereaved to his support group
  • Coordinating a nationwide plan to establish October 15 as Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day.    
  • Preparing and delivering a presentation on perinatal loss to professionals.
  • Editing a perinatal newsletter.
  • Listening to a loved one’s challenges and not giving undue advice.

I have talked to each of these individuals about their personal commitment and reasons for their actions.  There were no complaints about the number of time efforts took.  All of them gave willingly in honour of their baby/ies.  My husband, Chuck who volunteers for many Share related activities says it so well “ I give to my work, my church and my living children.  This is what I do for Christopher.”   Each of them shared how much their project or kindness assisted in their continued healing and remembering of their precious child/children.

In these days of uncertainty, I pray this article has given you some hope for your future. Remember to give yourselves the time you need for your own grieving.  The day will come when you are able to reach out to another and believe me your heart will sing!    

written by Cathi Lammert

Newsletter Samples

The following are cover story articles from past issues of Share’s publication for bereaved parents, Sharing.  We hope the selected articles bring you comfort and hope for the future.

Cover Story Features from 2007

  • What is the Best Gift You Have Given or Received in Honor of Your Baby?
  • Healing by Helping
  • Honoring Mother’s & Father’s Day
  • Parenting After Loss
  • Difficult Decisions
  • Holidays

Cover Story Features from 2006

  • Creative Ways of Healing
  • Grieving & Healing as a Couple 
  • Mother’s & Father’s Day 
  • Hospital Experiences 
  • How Many Children Do You Have?
  • Handling the Holidays & Love Letters to Your Baby

Complete Newsletter Samples

  • Coping With Grief During the Holidays
  • Faith & Spirituality 
  • Recurrent Loss

The Sharing newsletter is published bi-monthly, and subscriptions are available for $25 for a full year.  Read stories of healing and keep updated on the most recent information regarding bereavement support, legislation, and upcoming events

  Contact the National Share Office for your subscription.

Newsletter Submission Guidelines


The Sharing newsletter welcomes submissions by website, fax or in writing.  We encourage you to share your thoughts, feelings, ideas, poems, or stories no matter what the designated topic.  Your input is important to the creation of each newsletter.  Please follow the guidelines below for submission:

  • Provide title, author’s first and last name, and applicable loss information
  • Submissions must be received no later than the 1st of the month, one month prior to issue month.  If you are making a donation and would like to be recognized, or honor a birthday or anniversary, in the most recent edition of the newsletter, then it must be received by the 10th of the month, two months prior to the publication.
  • All submissions are subject to editing and may be used in current newsletters or saved for future use
  • Please type submissions in 10 point Arial or Times New Roman
  • If donating in memory of a baby, please provide loss information including the parents’ name(s)
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Planning a Share Walk in your area…

The Share Walk for Remembrance & Hope has touched hearts nationwide.  It is a meaningful event for friends, families, and caregivers that allows for a place to remember and honour our precious babies that have died, and also to gather support and hope from each other. 

Many parents strive to remember their babies and to bring awareness to others of the impact losing a child has on their lives.  For groups and individuals, planning a walk takes preparation and time.  It is important to acquire a Walk Packet and Walk Commitment from National Share so you can use Walk logos and shared Walk information from the National Walk Committee.  The National Share Office will compile a list of all scheduled Walks that will be printed on the Share website and in the Sharing Newsletter.  Visit our upcoming events page in the summer and fall to find more information about a Share Walk in your area. 

Share Walk Disclaimer:

Those hosting a Share Walk for Remembrance & Hope must complete and return a commitment form to National Share.  This allows the host to be affiliated oxa max with the Share network and use Share logos. 

If you are hosting an event or fundraising for Share Pregnancy & Infant Loss Support, Inc., including the Share Walk, proceeds are to be directed to National Share and cannot be used for non-profit use outside of the Share network.  A commitment form must be completed and returned to National Share to host a

Share Walk or use Share logos.

Thank you to our 2007 Share Walks!

Colorado Springs, CO   

Littleton, CO   

Fairview Heights, IL

Peoria, IL    

Naperville, IL   

Springfield, IL   

Dubuque, IA

Peterborough, NH   

Bridgewater, NJ   

Miltion, MA

Saugus, MA   

Cape Girardeau, MO   

Poplar Bluff, MO

Lancaster, PA   

Lewisburg, PA   

Nashville, TN

Salt Lake City, UT

Don’t see your state?  Contact the National Share Office for information about hosting your own Share Walk!

Contact the National Office or 1-800-821-6819 to receive your informational Walk Packet today or contact the Walk Chair for additional information about the National Share Walk-in St. Louis.


Local Share Groups

Perinatal Loss Support

Loss of a Child of Any Age

Support through complicated pregnancies

Support following a tragic prenatal diagnosis

Support following pregnancy interruption

Support for specific needs

Other Resources

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Postneonatal Deaths (28 days to 11 months)


Year       Number     Rate/1000

2004                    9,343                          2.27

2003                    9,132                          2.23

Neonatal Deaths (less than 28 days)


Year       Number     Rate/1000

2004                     18,593                        4.52

2003                     18,893                        4.62

2002                     18,791                        4.7

2001                     18, 275                        4.5

2000                     18,733                        4.6

1999                     18,700                         4.7

Source: National Vital Statistics Report, Vol. 53, No. 12, January 24, 2005

Explaining the 2001-02 Infant Mortality Increase Data from the Linked Birth/Infant Death Data Set, Table 2, extract.

View the National Vital Statistics Report from February 21, 2007.

Total Infant Deaths (including postneonatal and neonatal deaths)


Year     Number    Rate/1000

2004                   27,936                        6.79

2003                   28,025                        6.85

Fetal Deaths (20 weeks or greater)    


Year      Number     Rate/1000

2002                    25,943                         6.4

2001                    26,373                         6.5

2000                   27,003                         6.6

1999                    26,884                         6.7

Fetal Deaths (28 weeks or greater)


Year     Number    Rate/1000

2002                    13,285                        3.2

2001                    13,704                        3.3

2000                    13,039                        3.3

1999                    12,968                        3.4

Sources: Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, Vol. 53, No. 24, June 25, 2004, and unpublished worksheets prepared by M. Munson, J. Martin and Y. Patel.

Early Pregnancy Loss:  Less than 20 Weeks


Year    Number

1999                      900,000

(Note: These are the latest numbers that Share has for all Early Pregnancy Losses, which are more difficult to track, but were listed in the National Vital Statistics Report for 1999)

Comprehensive Health Data for Women and Men


Quick Health Data Online, provided by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office on Women’s Health, includes comprehensive data, for both men and women, from 1998-2004 on a variety of health-related topics.  Quick Health Data Online contains over 1,400 unique variables with details available by gender, race, and year.

Statistics on the Effects of Poverty on Maternal Health and Saving Newborn Lives


As stated in a report by Save the Children, newborns have the highest risk of death of all children.  See how Save the Children is working to improve health care to reduce newborn deaths in developing countries.

Rights of Parents Whose Baby Dies Very Early in the Pregnancy

Parents who have suffered an early pregnancy loss should have the opportunity:

  • To be with each other during any tests, procedures or hospitalization as much as possible.
  • To be cared for by an empathic staff who will respect their feelings, beliefs and individual requests.
  • To have information presented in terminology understandable to parents regarding their baby’s status and or cause of death (if known), including pathology reports and medical records.
  • To be told all options and to be given the choice (when medically possible) on how to proceed when their baby has died, such as D&C, natural delivery or delivery induced by medications.
  • To be able to see and hold their baby and take photographs if possible.
  • To be given the option to name their baby if they choose to, whether or not the gender is known.
  • To observe cultural and religious practices the parents feel are appropriate to the situation.
  • To be informed of the grieving process and to be given referrals and resources that will help them through their grief.
  • To be offered as many mementos as possible, for example, ultrasound photos, memory box, certificate of life.
  • To be given information on the facility’s disposition policy and offered choices whenever possible.
  • To be given options regarding farewell rituals such as a hospital memorial service, a balloon release, or a private burial at home.
  • To receive follow-up appointments for medical tests and genetic counseling or to review lab test results.  

These rights should be granted to parents no matter how early in the pregnancy their loss occurred.

Adapted from “Rights of Parents who Experience and Early Pregnancy Loss” by Perry-Lynn Moffit, co-author of A Silent Sorrow and endorsed by Share Pregnancy and Infant Loss Support, Inc. and pregnancy and perinatal loss support groups and leaders nationally.

Rights of Parents When a Baby Dies


  • To be given the opportunity to see, hold, touch, and bathe their baby at any time before and/ or after death within reason.
  • To have photographs of their baby taken and made available to the parents or held in a secure place until the parents wish to see them.
  • To be given as many mementos as possible, e.g., crib card, baby beads, ultrasound and / or other photos, lock of hair, baby clothing and blankets, feet and hand prints and/or permanent molds and record of weight and length.
  • To name their child and bond with him or her.
  • To observe cultural and religious practices.
  • To be cared for by an empathetic staff who will respect their feelings, thoughts, beliefs and and individual requests.
  • To be with each other throughout hospitalization as much as possible.
  • To be given time alone with their baby, allowing for individual needs.
  • To be informed of the grieving process.
  • To be given the option of donating their baby’s cartilage, tissue and/or organs for transplant or donating the baby’s body to science.
  • To request an autopsy. In the case of miscarriage, to request to have or not have an autopsy or pathology exam as determined by applicable law.
  • To have information presented in terminology understandable to the parents regarding their baby’s status and cause of death, including autopsy and pathology reports and medical records.
  • To plan a farewell ritual, burial or cremation in compliance with local and state regulations and according to their personal beliefs, religious or cultural tradition.
  • To be provided with information on support resources which assist in the healing process, e.g., local support groups, perinatal loss internet support, counseling, reading material and perinatal loss newsletters.

The Rights of Parents was updated in July 2006.
The bold words reflect this update.

Rights of the Baby


  • To be recognized as a person who was born and died.
  • To be named.
  • To be seen, touched and held by the family.
  • To have the end of life acknowledged.
  • To be put to rest with dignity.

Rights of Children When a Sibling Dies


  • To be acknowledged as individuals who have feelings that need to be expressed.
  • To be given the choice to see and hold our sibling before and after the death within reason.
  • To be considered in the choices parents are given, we may have opinions on such things as plans for funeral, baby’s name, etc.
  • To be informed about the feelings of grief in our terms, giving us the choice of a support group or counselor.
  • To be recognized by our society that we will always love and miss our sibling.

Copyright © 1991 Adapted by Share Pregnancy and Infant Loss Support, Inc., with permission from Women’s College Hospital, Perinatal Bereavement Team, Toronto Ontario Canada.  Updated July 2006.