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44th TCF National Conference

July 16, 2021 - July 18, 2021

TCF’s 44th National Conference will be presented virtually July 16-18, 2021. Although we would love to be together in person, we can still connect, support, and gather as a community through our virtual event.

Comments from the 2020 Virtual Conference

“The Conference meant so much to me. It was beautifully presented. I will always be grateful that I was able to attend.” – 2020 Virtual Conference Attendee

“I am very grateful for all your hard work putting together such an amazing 3 day event. I am newly bereaved and this conference was that ray of sunshine that I needed. The Compassionate Friends conference has given me tools that I didn’t even know I needed to help me ease some of this pain in my heart.” – 2020 Virtual Conference Attendee



If you missed the National Conference. Keynote sessions and many additional conference sessions were recorded available for 90 days after the conference so you can listen to them when they’re convenient for you.

Conference Recordings – $95

Access Now

Speakers Workshops

Keynote Speakers

Scarlett Lewis founded the Jesse Lewis Choose Love Movement, which helps people build a culture of love, resilience, forgiveness, and connection in our communities. Scarlett is the mother of Jesse Lewis, who was killed in his classroom during the Sandy Hook Elementary School tragedy. She has been interviewed by BBC, Fox News, CBS, and the Today Show, and has been featured in Fortune, Strive, and the Huffington Post. Scarlett will share how to thoughtfully respond with love in any situation by using the Choose Love Formula.
Dennis Apple is a pastor, author, and long-time workshop presenter at TCF national conferences. His18-year-old son, Denny, died suddenly in his sleep from complications of mononucleosis. The pastor of a mega church, Dennis felt he was exempt from the tragedies that others experienced. Sixteen years later, after a crisis of faith and deep despair, he wrote about his struggle in a book, “Life After the Death of My Son.” Dennis co-leads the TCF of Johnson County chapter in Leawood, Kansas.
Peggi Johnson is an avid writer and frequent contributor to We Need Not Walk Alone, TCF’s magazine. Her son, Jordan, died by suicide at the age of 19, in 2009. After Jordan’s death, she learned about and received support from TCF. She then served as editor for six chapters in the Washington, DC and Northern Virginia area, as well as a chapter leader in Piedmont, VA. Since 2013, Peggi has presented workshops for TCF national conferences.
Zander Sprague is an author, speaker, and licensed counselor. In 1996, his sister was murdered, and, ten years later, his sister-in-law died of a massive cerebral hemorrhage at the age of 35. Zander is the author of “Making Lemonade: Choosing a Positive Pathway After Losing Your Sibling.” His latest book, “Why Don’t They Cry? Understanding Your Living Child’s Grief” is going to press later this year. Zander is a certified From Heartbreak to Happiness® grief coach.

Thanks to our Sponsors

Event Sponsors



Major Sponsors

TCF Manhattan Chapter and
TCF Twin Forks/Hamptons Chapter





More workshops will be added as they are confirmed.

Loss of the Difficult or Troubled Child – presented by Marcia Alig

Struggling to Reclaim my Faith – presented by Dennis Apple

“You Can’t Make This Stuff Up” – presented by Dennis Apple

Grieving Your Loss AND Living Your Life – presented by Beth Alvero and Connie Palmer

Continuing Our Bond: Moving Forward While Continuing the Bond – presented by California Anderson

Healthy and Unhealthy Grief – presented by Bob Baugher

Intimacy and Grief– presented by Bob Baugher

Do Women and Men Really Grieve Differently? – presented by Bob Baugher

I’m Ok, I’m Not Ok, and That’s Ok – presented by Judi Barbee

Turning Your Grief into Random Acts of Kindness – presented by Robert Bowdoin

Parental Bereavement: Equals Parts Grief, Trauma, and Resilience – presented by Brigid Boyle

Communicating with the Friends of Your Adult Child– presented by Terry Cotting-Mogan and Nate Leibold

Being Present with Someone Experiencing Grief – presented by Terry Cotting-Mogan

Who Am I Now? – presented by Ellen Croce

Trust Your Journey: Tips from the Loss of an Only Child – presented by Vic Cross

Everyone’s Work: Building a Grief Community to Include All Philosophies – presented by Susan Cyr

Parents’ Grief Daily Meditations for Healing After the Death of Child – presented by Clifford Denay, Jr.

De-stigmatizing the Death of a Child by Homicide – presented by Karen Lynne Duffie

Signs from Heaven – presented by Christine Duminiak

Finding the Moments of Light Inside of Your Loss – presented by Lisa Cooper Ellison

Forgiveness 101: Understanding How Forgiveness Impacts Our Grief – presented by Lisa Cooper Ellison

Cultivate Peace in a Time of Loss – presented by Lisa Cooper Ellison

Things Christians Say but They Shouldn’t – presented by Jason Gattis

The Gifts of Grief – presented by Donna Goodrich

Learn the Emotional Freedom Technique to Help Cope – presented by Robert Goor

Managing Your Suicide Loss with the 4 Cornerstones of Healing – presented by Peggy Green

Gentle Yoga and Movement for Healing and Grief – presented by Angie Grimsley

After-Death Communications – presented by Bill Guggenheim

Dreams of the Bereaved – presented by Joyce Harvey

Now Childless – How Do I Go Forward? – presented by Joyce Harvey

Finding Positivity in Our OMGosh Moments of Life – presented by Brian Heil

Helping Grandchildren Mourn When Overwhelmed in Our Own Grief – presented by Diana Henderson

Loss to Miscarriage and Stillbirth – presented by Darleen Herriman

Affirmation Writing: A Grief Healing Step – presented by Harriet Hodgson

Grief Doodling: A Step on the Healing Path – presented by Harriet Hodgson

Resilience- The Key To Surviving Loss – presented by Barbara Hopkinson

Ten Things You Can Do To Change Your Life! – presented by Gloria Horsley, Heidi Horsley and Alan Pedersen 

Help! I’m Worried About My Surviving Teen or Young Adult Child – presented by Gloria and Heidi Horsley

Creating a Children’s Memorial Garden – presented by William and Millie Hunton

Healing When Faith is Not an Option – presented by Peggi Johnson

Loss of an Adopted Child – presented by Peggi Johnson

Death to the Disease of Addiction – presented by Nancy Juracka

Navigating Grief Over Many Decades – presented by Carol Kearns

Death of an Adult Child: Married with Children – presented by Cathy Kelly

Expressive Writing for Healing – presented by Mary Potter Kenyon

Posttraumatic Growth: How Gifts Can Come From Loss – presented by Sarah Kiani

Sudden Death Vehicular – A Panel – presented by Ann Khadalia

Writing Your Grief Memoir – presented by Margaret Kramar

Apart from Us, but Always a Part of Us – presented by Lora and Dave Krum

Finding Joy after the Loss of a Child – presented by Connie Krupp

Children: Growing with Grief – presented by Jennifer Magid Lentz

Grief Writing Workshop – presented by Katie Lueders

Support Your Living Children While Grieving Your Deceased Child – presented by Cara Martinisi

The Power of Honoring Your Child by Creating a Memorial Fund – presented by Tim Meadows

Yoga for Healing – presented by Judy McClendon

More Than Words Can Say – presented by Nate McClendon

The Art of Poetry and Grieving – presented by Bev Miller

Fitness and Grief – presented by Steve and Stacy Parker

Grief as a Second Language – presented by Steve and Stacy Parker

Healing Guilt and Regret – presented by Alan Pedersen

Using Modern Technology to Grieve – presented by Reid Peterson

Growing Through Grief in a Relationship – presented by Richard and Barbara Pryor

When Someone You Know is Grieving – presented by Susan Quenelle

Teddy Bears and Quilts in Memory of Your Child – presented by Kathy Rambo

Helping Ourselves in Our Grief Journey Through Arts and Crafts – presented by Donna Reagan

Finding a new purpose after your special needs child dies – presented by Donna Reagan and Sue Schindler

Memory Box – presented by Donna Reagan

Continuing Bonds with Our Children, Grandchildren, and Siblings – presented by Sara Ruble

Surviving the Loss of a Loved One to Suicide – presented by Rebekah Schmitt

Fresh Grief vs. Long-Standing Grief – presented by Suzanne Sessions

Writing Through Grief After a Loss from Substance Use – presented by Lynn Shattuck

Sibling Panel for Parents – To Better Understand Surviving Siblings – presented by Keith Singer

Why Don’t They Cry?: Understanding Your Living Childs Grief – presented by Zander Sprague

The Secret Language of Grief : Writing from Objects – presented by Carol Smith

How I Survived My Son’s Suicide – presented by Laura Stack

Language Matters– presented by Kimberly Starr

Leaning Into Grief – presented by Kimberly Starr

Inclusion and Diversity Commission Panel – presented by Stephen Stott

Catching Your Breath – The Impact of Sudden Loss – presented by Carol Thompson

Finding a New Purpose in Life – presented by Ghislaine Thomsen

Reflecting On the Early Years of Grief: Hurt Lingers, Hope Lives – presented by Pat Timpanaro

Nuestros Hijos e Hijas Por Siempre en Nuestros Corazones – presented by Nivia Vázquez

Pregnancy Loss: Understanding the Impact Helping Families Grieve – presented by Gary Vogel

Pregnancy and Infant Loss for Bereaved Grandparents – presented by Ann Walsh and Debbie Fluhr

Keeping Our Children’s Memories Alive! – presented by Arlene Watkins

Finding Peace through the Page (Writing towards Healing) – presented by Crystal Webster

Finding Meaning in Your Loss (For Parents Who are Now Childless) – presented by Crystal Webster

Weave Your Stories Forward – Let the Healing Begin – presented by Dr. Mary Welsh

Parents Perspective for Surviving Siblings – presented by Varda Wendroff and Michele Muro

Smell the Grief: The Impact of our Olfactory System on Emotions – presented by Jason and Tracy Wendroff-Rawnicki

Your Issues are in Your Tissues: Move Your Body, Change Your Thoughts – presented by Jason and Tracy Wendroff-Rawnicki

For Men Only: Finding the Strength to Carry On (Panel)– presented by David Wood

For Parents in Recovery: Staying Sober After Losing a Child – presented by David Wood

Journaling from Grieving to Grateful – presented by Tina Zarlenga



More sibling workshops will be added as they are confirmed.

Sudden Death Not So Suddenpresented by Erica Acierno

Suddenly Alone – presented by Jordon Ferber

How’s Your Mother? – presented by Jordon Ferber

Wellness in Grief: Taking Care of Ourselves, Honoring Our Grief – presented by Linda Frank

Sibling Loss Sucks! – presented by Heidi Horsley

Multiple Sibling Loss – presented by Chris Lourenco

Special Child, In a Loving World – presented by Sam Merriman

Bibliotherapy and Grief: How Books Can Help Your Grief – presented by Kimmy Meyer

Sibling Grief Writing Workshop – presented by Kimmy Meyer

Navigating the Loss of a Parent After Losing Your Sibling – presented by Kimmy Meyer

Poetry! A Vehicle to Help Hear, Feel, and Heal – presented by Danny Older

How to Start a Sibling Group – presented by Keith Singer

Sibling Panel for Siblings by Siblings – presented by Keith Singer

Shifting Family Dynamics After Sibling Loss – presented by Zander Sprague

LGBTQ+ Siblings – presented by Stephen Stott

Thoughts, Feelings and Sensations, What’s the Difference? – presented by Jason Wendroff Rawnicki

Twiinship: When a Twiin Losses Their Other Half – presented by Jason Wendroff Rawnicki



July 16, 2021
July 18, 2021
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