Archive for January, 2013

On December 18th, 2012, Eileen and Andy Bond of Nepean were awarded Queen Elizabeth ll Diamond Jubilee Medals for their work in co-founding and leading the Ottawa Chapter of The Compassionate Friends, an international volunteer peer support network for bereaved parents.

In his acceptance speech, Andy Bond spoke of how their 20-year old son Kevin died unexpectedly at the age of 20 in 1994. Four years later they were invited by friends, also bereaved parents, to attend a national conference of The Compassionate Friends in Kelowna BC. They found it a most valuable experience, and on returning home, decided to start a Chapter in Ottawa to help other parents who experienced the death of a child. The Ottawa Chapter held its first meeting in May 1999, and has conducted meetings every month year-round since then.

Now in its 14th year, the Ottawa Chapter also participates in the Annual Worldwide Candle Lighting ceremonies every December, organizes a Balloon Release in June in conjunction with CHEO and Rogers House, and provides a library for members. The group was also instrumental in creating and maintaining The Butterfly Garden at CHEO from its conception in 2002 to completion in 2007.

It is often stated that the community of bereaved parents is not a group that one would choose to join, but the support of others who have experienced a similar loss can often help in ways unlike any other.

The medals to Eileen and Andy Bond were presented by Gary Lindfield, Executive Director of Canadian Parents of Murdered Children (CPMOC), in a special presentation at The Old Forge Community Resource Centre on Carling Avenue. The Old Forge is the regular monthly meeting place of The Compassionate Friends.

In his address, Mr. Lindfield described how 6 years ago the support of The Compassionate Friends in Ottawa helped their family at a terrible time. He and his wife went on to establish the Canadian POMC which he now leads. As a registered national charity, CPOMC was invited by the Governor General’s Office to be a partnering organization for the awarding of the Diamond Jubilee medals.

Medals presentation

Eileen and Andy Bond show their Diamond Jubilee medals and certificates during a presentation ceremony Dec. 18, 2012, at The Olde Forge in Ottawa. The medals were presented by Gary Lindfield (left).

For more information on this release, please contact Arthur Cordell at denart40@sympatico.ca

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