Learning to cope with life after losing a child
Ryan and Angelica Williams said Denihm was their ray of sunshine.
In the five years that he was here on this earth, he touched more lives than they had ever imagined.
“He was a really great kid,” said Ryan, Denihm’s father. “He was full of life and a typical five-year-old. He was our everything.”
Katie: “He definitely made a big impression?”
“Bigger than we thought,” said Angelica, Denihm’s mother.
Katie: “And he’ll keep going?”
“Yes,” said Ryan.
Denihm was killed in an ATV accident shortly after Thanksgiving.
The last month and a half has been tough for the couple without a doubt.
Even so, the couple said they were able to find hope when it felt like all was lost.
“Ms. Reecie and my wife talk a lot and she gives us a lot of hope and things to look forward to,” said Ryan.
Reecie Gilmore is all too familiar with the fight for Williams. She drowned her son Clint 14 years ago.
“You’re so isolated,” Gilmore began. “Nobody understands how you feel, you are completely abnormal and you live in completely abnormal conditions.”
For those fourteen years, Gilmore has worked to start a nonprofit group; one that would help parents who have lost children face this new life.
“At the moment of the tragedy, I didn’t know what to do next,” said Gilmore. “I buried a grandmother; I buried a grandfather, but that was it. I never planned a funeral, so the idea of having to plan my son’s funeral was perverted. That was the idea of creating something that Families would guide what “to do next.” This is the process no one is preparing for. “
This dream came true on January 11th, the RescYou group officially opened its doors and looked after an area with ten parishes.
“There is no set of rules telling you how to deal with the loss of a child,” said Gilmore. “That’s what, in a way, I wanted to create, a process and a program that could guide families with specific steps on what to do next.”
These steps include:
– 24 hour navigator, someone who meets families in the hospital and guides them through the next hours and days after the loss of a child.
– A child life expert on staff to help siblings deal with the loss of a brother or sister.
– Support families financially with funeral expenses.
– Free consultation for one year
“We partnered with the Lost in Transition Center and they offer free counseling for families for up to a year,” said Gilmore. “It doesn’t matter when the loss was when you first start your 12 months. It can be two years before you decide you need help and you can start this grief counseling.”
Ryan and Angelica still have a long way to go, but something they can look forward to – the birth of their second son in a few months.
“His name will be Denver,” said Ryan. “We hope to greet him with open arms. Don’t fill the gap, fix it a little.”
Katie: Denver will know a lot about denim right?
“He’d talk to Denver and say don’t hurt my mom and all,” Ryan said.
Katie: He was protecting his mom.
“Yeah, and he was so ready to be a big brother,” said Ryan.
You can also call or send an SMS Reecie Gilmore at: (361) 944-4226