Society

Hope and Healing With Will Reeve and Bo’s Place

This Luncheon Sets Records, Advances a Life Changing Mission

BY // 02.17.19
photography Johnny Than

The shared stories of untimely, tragic deaths could have left the throng of 750 attending the Bo’s Place annual Hope and Healing luncheon with a deep sense of sadness. But with each story the effective panaceas of hope, resilience and a community of support served to elevate the mood, proving that life can go on.

Among the moving stories of loss and recovery was that of guest speaker Will Reeve, who had lost both parents — film star Christopher Reeve and entertainer Dana Reeve —  by the time he was 13. Reeve, who at age 26 is an ESPN commentator and philanthropist, spoke on the importance of support like that of Bo’s Place, which provides grief support groups and services for those who have lost a loved one, particularly children.

The handsome 6-foot-4 personality told the gathering, “Hope is what has sustained me… Any moment that you have hope or another option, sweep the other option off the table, choose hope.” In the process of his personal healing, Reeve has become a champion of bereaved children.

Also sharing their stories, via video, were luncheon chairs Courtney and Jeremy Brynes, who lost a baby to a rare disease, and David Hartland, whose first wife died of breast cancer, and his wife, Claudine Hartland, who as a mother of three young children lost her husband in a skiing accident. The two women have been best friends for many years and offered invaluable support to one another during their times of grief.

There was yet another story of grief from the Robin Bush Award honoree Kathy O’Neil, who, though she tragically lost two husbands to accidents, thrives today in her third marriage. Understanding better than most the pain of loss, O’Neil has been a longtime supporter of Bo’s Place, which has been serving the bereaved since its founding in 1990.

With encouragement from Bo’s Place board president Meredith Chastang, the luncheon raised more than $370,000 including the $50,000 that was raised in the ballroom on the day of the luncheon, a Bo’s Place record.

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PC Seen: Emcee Lisa Malosky, Nina and Edd Hendee (parents of Claudine Hartland’s late husband), Lindy Neuhaus, Patrick Chastang, Liz Anders, Flo McGee, Wade Upton, Karen Lerner, Drs. Sushma and Haresh Yalamanchili, Kaitlyn and Michael Scheurich, David Baldwin, Nicole Katz, Megan Hotze, Mary Kristen and David Valentine, Brooke Zarr and Bo’s Place executive director Mary Beth Staine.

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