The James Reid Funeral Home Bereavement Support Program

“It’s one of those things where you don’t know what you don’t know.”

    Bereavement support. That’s what this family member is talking about. When her husband died, she thought she’d cry at home, head out and get things done, rinse and repeat. It was a busy time taking care of his estate. Now, months later, the stress is finally less. She has competently managed. But she is discovering that there is more to it.

That’s where James Reid Funeral Home comes in with Bereavement Support. It’s not articles online. It’s not a monthly mailing. It’s a relationship built with one of two Bereavement Support Providers through monthly phone calls or visits for a year after the service (or for six hour-long sessions for self-referrals from the community). It’s a safe place to learn what you don’t know you don’t know about the grief process. With a listening ear, it’s exploring the ways you may be feeling you are going crazy, and finding assurance that you’re not. 

It’s also finding a grieving community. James Reid Funeral Home leads a monthly Public Information Evening and spring and fall Walking Through Grief Group, co-hosted by Hospice Kingston, at Lemoine Point.  Everyone is welcomed by the Support Providers and by peers for whom Bereavement Support is breaking out of the default isolation. It’s the chance to sit, walk, share and listen with others who are there too. 

As this family member speaks with James Reid Funeral Home Bereavement Support, she is exploring her natural response to an unwelcomed event. She is sharing a vocabulary of grief that is a precious commodity for her. Self-understanding and clarity about her responses increase her all-over health. James Reid Funeral Home continues relationship with family members through following them past the funeral or service. It’s one of the things we know we know: funerals are for the living.

Public Information Evenings

The Bereavement Support Coordinators lead a reflection on an aspect of grief monthly. We meet in the James Reid Funeral Home Reception Centre, from 7-9 p.m., on the first Monday of each month (except July and August). Refreshments are provided. Opportunities to share your story and to hear others are made available, with no pressure to talk.

Where?    The James Reid Reception Centre, 1900 John Counter

When?     The First Monday of the Month, 7 – 9 PM

What?      A Presentation (to inform), Discussion (to support),                       Refreshments (to feel you’re not alone)

Who?        All Are Welcome to Attend

How?        Come: No Registration, No Cost. In case of bad                           weather, please us at 613-544-3411 to see if we must                 cancel.

James Reid Funeral Home Bereavement Support Program
Public Information Evenings: 2018 – 2019 Schedule

~the first Monday evening of most months, 7-9 pm~

September 10             Living with Loneliness

October 1                   Making Decisions

November 5                Holidays & Annual Reminders

December 3                Candle Lighting Ceremony

January 7                   Rituals & Remembering

February 4                  Changing Relationships in Grief

March 4                      Self-Care and Coping Strategies

April 1                         The Emotions of Grief

May 6                         Understanding Loss

June 3                        First Person Panel Discussion

Walking through Grief Group

We offer a bereavement walking group at Lemoine Point Conservation area during the spring and the fall. Our walking group invites all bereaved individuals who have experienced the death of someone significant.  We enjoy the refuge of Lemoine Point and the understanding of others. If you are grieving and would like to make connections with nature and people, this walk is for you.

  • This fall 2018 it will be held every Thursday from
  • September 13 – November 15, 2018.
  • We walk from 9:30 am – 10:30 am at Lemoine Point Conservation Area. Various paces welcome.
  • Please meet us at the main parking lot – follow Coverdale Drive and past Rotary Park entrance to Lemoine Point.
  • Picnic refreshments from 10:30 am – 11:00 am (optional).
  • Cancellation due to bad weather. If unsure, call James Reid’s, 613-544-3411, after 8:30am.
  • There is no charge for this group, but we ask that you pre-register by calling James Reid Funeral Home at 613-544-3411 or Hospice Kingston at 613-542-5013.   We don’t want to leave any one behind!

James Reid Funeral Home Lending Library

Please feel free to browse our well-stocked bookcase of books relating to grief and bereavement. You may borrow these books freely after Public Information Evenings or during regular funeral home hours. There is a three-month lending period.

Please contact our Bereavement Support Coordinators:

SARAH REID HEDBERG B.S.W. (McGill), M.A. (Toronto), has provided grief support at James Reid Funeral Home from 2001-2003 and since 2014. She taught English at Community Colleges for eight years. She is married, has two boys, and volunteers at her church.  Sarah is the fifth generation working in the James Reid family business.


NANCY HANCOCK, M.Div. (Tyndale Theological Seminary), is an ordained minister who worked as a hospital and community chaplain for 20 years, 15 of those in Kingston.  Nancy enjoys singing in choirs, is active in her church, and a proud mother of four and grandmother of two. She joined the Bereavement Support Program in 2018.