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BEACON of Hope


NEW SOS Location


SOS Dine Out Social


Skydving Exprerience



Survivor Outreach Services • May/June 2012



saw flowers this morning. As a transplant to the Pacific Northwest, I am still getting used to the unique weather we have here. The long winter. The very short summer (if we even have a summer!). The rain that sometimes reminds me of Noah. “Dreary” can be a good description for much of the weather here. But . . . I saw flowers this morning. Futilely dodging the raindrops, I ventured across the street for a cup of coffee. And there they were. Like beacons in the darkness of my soul, they caused me to stop, if only momentarily. I don’t know what kind of flowers they were—a flower is a flower to me . . . . But I stopped. And I reflected on the cycle of life that we see everywhere. Like in my flowers. They are blooming now, and they bring joy. Yet the time comes when they are no more. And my soul misses them. And dreariness returns. But I know . . . I will see the flowers again.

“Every Time I See My Pansies” Every time I see my pansies Vivid in the golden sun, You are with me in my garden, And I am once again a child. Vivid in the golden sun, Their beauty brings me close to tears, And I am once again a child Learning to assume your grace. Their beauty brings me close to tears As I join hands with you in love, Learning to assume your grace, Dancing to your inner music. As I join hands with you in love, You are with me in my garden, Dancing to your inner music Every time I see my pansies

Gene Fowler (Chip)

Written by Nicholas Gordon

SOS Support Coordinator

Cover: Evelyn and her Mom, Sarah McConnell.

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May/June 2012

Follow us on Facebook at and get the latest information on SOS programs. Stay tuned for the SOS Grand Opening details!

Kids’ Play Area Office Space

ACS Annex, Bldg. 2166 Liggett Ave. and S. 12th St. JBLM-Lewis Main

Building Exterior

We Have

Moved !



Ask S t acey... If I was interested in connecting with another Survivor, who could I talk to?

Here in the SOS office we can connect you with Survivors in the local area. There is also a non-government program called Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors, commonly known as TAPS. TAPS has a Peer Mentor program in which they connect a Survivor with a another Survivor further along in their Grief Process with similarities; such as circumstance of death, age, number of children. You can request a Peer Mentor by visiting www., under Programs, click on Peer Support or calling toll free 800-959-TAPS (8277).

How Can I Become A Peer Mentor?

If you are interested in becoming a Peer Mentor yourself, you can visit, under Programs, click Peer Support and follow the links to get registered. Minimum requirement of 18 months post death, online training at your own pace, and a one day in person training.

Has CYS taken an initative to help Families of the Fallen?

Child, Youth Services (CYS) has an initiative for Fallen Warriors for immediate Family Members. Eligibility begins at notification and continues until the child/youth reaches their 18th birthday. Support Services include 16 hours of FREE hourly respite care per child per month during the eligible period. Hourly fee reduction to $2 per child per hour for any care beyond the free respite care hours. Category 1 fee for regularly scheduled full or part day care. Up to 4 FREE SKIES (instructional) classes per child/ youth (NTE 8 weeks per class). Up to 2 FREE CYS team or individual sports per child/youth. To enroll, call 253-966-CYSS (2977) or email

Bellingham, WA Monday, April 30 @ 6 p.m. Boundary Bay Brewery

Sequim, WA Monday, May 14 @ 6 p.m. Sergios Family Restaurant

Bremerton, WA Tuesday, May 29 @ 6 p.m. Bremerton Bar and Grill

Vancouver, WA Thursday, June 7 @ 6 p.m. Beaches Restaurant

Stacey Pennington is the Financial Counselor with the Survivor Outreach Services at JBLM.

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May/June 2012

SOS DINE OUT SOCIAL Jarred Lathrop (Contracted SOS Support Coordinator, Seattle/253-512-1353) and I got together and looked at a map of the counties in Washington to pick places to host our SOS Dine Out Social events. In the beginning we thought maybe doing this Dine Out Event should be quarterly, but after receiving a lot of feedback we realized doing this event monthly is what is needed and wanted by our Survivors. We located more centralized areas to host these events for the geographically dispersed families. We received feedback from Survivors who have difficulty getting to JBLM and the Seattle metropolitan area, saying they would like to have events closer to where they live. Although we are not able to host these events in each Survivors home town, we are trying to get out to areas closer to where groups of Survivors live. For the next few monthly we’ve chosen Bellingham, Sequim, Bremerton, and Vancouver.

Mara Barthel and Linda Daniel

Our next goal is getting out to the coast somewhere near Aberdeen. We are always open to suggestions of areas to host this monthly event and restaurants. So if you have a favorite please let us know. If you know of a Survivor we haven’t been able to touch or reach please let us know. Our goal for these SOS Dine Out Socials is :fellowship, sharing, remembering, camaraderie, new friendships, support, resources, connection and network. Megan Carolus, Contracted SOS Support Coordinator, Bothell/425-354-2646

Sarah and little Evelyn McConnell



Photo: SGT. Jared Zell

with the

U.S. Army Golden Knights

by Holly Ingram Surviving Spouse of SGT Matthew Ingram

Golden Knight SSG Noah Watts and Holly Ingram

On February 28, 2012 my brother, Beau and I had the pleasure of Tandem Skydiving with the U.S. Army Golden Knights in Homestead, Fl. The Golden Knight Tandem team was very welcoming and Army spirited. The whole process from getting in contact with them, to setting up a date and time, to the actual jump day was easy and smooth. It was an amazing experience for me because it is something that I have always wanted to do and to do it with an elite group of men and women made it all the better. On jump day we had the pleasure of jumping with part of the U.S. Army Marksmanship team, a few Lt. Col’s. , and the head of security for the Miami Heat, all of whom were very fun to hang out with for the day. Jumping out of an airplane at about 130 mph and about two miles up is an experience that is so liberating and mind-blowing that I cannot wait to do it again. I am very honored to have had this privilege and it was very nice to be able to do something that I have always dreamed of with my “Army Family.”

Mother’s Day May 13

For Surviving Wives who Mother their children, for the Mothers who love their children who served, we honor you with this poem.

Father’s Day June 17 For Surviving Fathers who Raise their children, for the Fathers who love their children who served, we honor you with this poem.

Mother’s Love “Her love is like an island in life’s ocean, vast and wide A peaceful, quiet shelter From the wind, the rain, the tide. ‘Tis bound on the north by Hope, By Patience on the West, By tender Counsel on the South And on the East by Rest. Above it like a beacon light Shine Faith, and Truth, and Prayer; And thro’ the changing scenes of life I find a haven there.”

Special Hero “When I was a baby, you would hold me in your arms. I felt the love and tenderness, keeping me safe from harm. I would look up into your eyes, and all the love I would see. How did I get so lucky, you were the dad chosen for me. There is something special about a father’s love. Seems it was sent to me from someplace up above. Our love is everlasting, I just wanted you to know. That you’re my special hero and I wanted to tell you so.”


Christina M. Kerschen (

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Support Resources Army and Air Force Exchange Service www.

Army Casualty Assistance

Army Emergency Relief

Chaplain Assistance


Military and Civilian Pay

Retirement Services default.asp

Social Security Administration

Taxes locations.cfm

DEERS Updates

U.S. Air Force

U.S. Army

1-800-538-9552 Fax: 1-831-655-8317

Dental (Active Duty) tdp.jsp

Veterans’ Affairs

Dental (Retiree)

Identification Cards Legal

Medical (Medicare) Home.asp

Medical (TRICARE)

DD Form 1300/”Report of Casualty” (provided by your Service Casualty Officer)

DD Form 2064/”Certificate of Death (overseas)” Civilian Death Certificates (may

be purchased through funeral home; 12 copies recommended)

Marriage Certificate Divorce Decree Immigration Documents Naturalization Papers Adoption and or Custody Documents

Important Documents

Social Security Number/Card (for

National Cemetery Administration 1-800-827-1000 Memorial Programs Service 1-800-697-6947 Presidential Memorial Certificate Prg. 202-565-4259 Head Stones and Markers 1-800-697-6947

Arlington National Cemetery 877-907-8585

To obtain certified copies of a State Death Certificate, check with any Funeral Director, who can assist you in the process. There may be a fee for extra state Death Certificates.

all family members)

Wills and Deeds of Trust Insurance Policies (life, home, vehicles, etc.)

Income Tax Records (past three


Documents Referring to Bank Accounts, Loans, Securities, etc. References to Safe Deposit Boxes References to Outstanding Debt

Get the latest JBLM event info at BEACON of Hope is an authorized unofficial community information source published for surviving members of the Joint Base Lewis-McChord community. There is no U.S. government endorsement of any commercial sponsor. Editorial content is provided by Survivor Outreach Services Program, Army Community Service, and Family & Morale Welfare and Recreation offices. Submissions are welcome, but will be edited for accuracy, brevity, clarity and journalistic style. Submissions are due on the first day of the month, one month prior to publication date. BEACON of Hope is a bimonthly publication. Circulation: 1000. Send submissions to: Policy: We encourage letters to the editor, but they must be signed. We will consider withholding the name of the author upon request. Letters regarding an issue should contribute to informational interest. We reserve the right to edit all material for style, to fit available space, to resolve libel, force protection and grammar.Although the information in the issue is current at time of publication, activities and events are subject to change. Please contact the activity for confirmation.

BEACON of Hope Editor/Graphic Design: Johanna Krause


Support Resources Tragedy Assistance Program For Survivors (TAPS) 1-800-959-TAPS

Gold Star Wives of America, Inc. 1-888-751-6350

Gold Star Mothers, Inc.

The Soldier’s Project NW



Grief, Inc.


JBLM Survivor Outreach Services

Bereaved Parents of the USA


National Military Families Assoc.

The Moyer Foundation

ACS Annex Bldg. 2166, Liggett Ave. and S. 12th St. 253-967-7501 Mon - Fri, 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. www.lewisarmysos@


Dougy Center for Grieving

The Survivor Outreach Service provides long term assitance and offers financial counseling and referral services to address the needs of Surviving Family Members.

Vet Center

I Cried Too

Military One Source

Society of Military Widows


Bereavement Counseling

Give An Hour

e-mail support groups Kids-to-Kids (under 12 yrs.) K2K-Teens ( 13 - 18 yrs.)


(enter zip code to locate a counselor)

Army Reserve SOS Seattle 404-903-7760/903-7852 Northern California 404-903-7798

Bridges: A Center for Grieving Children 253-272-8266

Western Washington 253-202-0982 Eastern Washington 253-376-1889 Oregon 503-932-7903/309-3334 Northern California 916-854-3472 Idaho 208-272-3512 Montana 406-324-3243

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JBLM Casualty Assistance Center Waller Hall Bldg. 2140, Ligget Ave. 253-966-5890 Mon - Fri, 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. lewisdhrmpdcasualtyassistctr@ Provides assistance to the Next-of-Kin (NOK) of deceased Soldiers in obtaining mortuary entitlements, insurance claims, Survivor Benefits, Veteran’s assistance and other benefits to which the NOK is entitled.

Suicide Survivors

National Guard SOS

NEW ion at L oc

American Association of Suicidology 1-202-237-2280

Suicide Awareness Voices of Education (SAVE) 1-888-511-SAVE

JBLM Retirement Services Waller Hall Bldg. 2140, Ligget Ave. 253-966-5881 Mon - Fri, 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. Provides counsel to Survivor’s of Active Duty Soldiers and completes all necessary forms for the Survivor Benefit Plan.

National Suicide Prevention

1-800-273-TALK (8255)


May/June 2012

Beacon of Hope May/June 2012  

Information and events for military survivors and their families

Beacon of Hope May/June 2012  

Information and events for military survivors and their families