TOLEDO, Ohio — Families who often feel alone are coming together to remember those they've lost.
"I feel that it's really important to find the purpose in our pain," said Jan Burgard-Moore.
It’s the Night of Hope and Remembrance to honor the lives of those who have died by suicide and addiction.
This all comes during national Suicide Prevention Month and National Recovery Month. Organizers say it’s important they end the stigma and start the conversation to help those in our community.
It's a day Robin will never forget. Her brother just 28 took his life.
"You never get over it,” said Robin Naumann. “You learn to live with it, you learn to live life without them, but it never goes away."
But unfortunately that's not her only experience. Years ago, her son 15 also died by suicide.
"It was probably the most devastating thing I have even been through in my life,” said Naumann. “And I've lost many people in my life, but to lose your child and for him to choose that is very difficult."
As Robin sought healing, she became a part of "Inspired by Grace," a non-profit and peer support group for those affected by suicide, addiction and more.
As she volunteered and gained support she found comfort alongside others who knew her pain, like the group’s executive director who attempted suicide and has also lost so many loved ones to suicide.
"The most healing comes when you're able to be relatable to other people who have had similar experiences and help them,” said Jan Burgard-Moore and let them know that they are not alone."
Now Jan and Robin work side-by-side to end the stigma of suicide and addiction. They feel both are related and have been deeply impacted by each and they know they aren't alone. It’s because of that, that Inspired by Grace is hosting the annual “Night of Hope and Remembrance.” To speak their names, have a candle lighting, speakers, resources and more.
"To honor those people that are gone to let people understand that their lives mattered,” said Jan Burgard-Moore. “They lived. They loved. They mattered. "
The night not only gives an outlet for family and friends, but it also seeks to reach out to those who are struggling right now to provide support, resources and help.
“When somebody is reaching out for help that is a sign of strength,” said Burgard-Moore. “It's not a sign of weakness and people need to understand that message. So, we want to do all that we can to get that message out."
The event begins at 6 p.m. this Monday at Grace Lutheran Church, the ceremony and candle lighting is set for 8 p.m.
As Robin still grieves the loss of three influential men in her life, she's grateful for the support she has received and wants the same for others.
"It brings peace to you in a way that I can't really describe,” said Robin Naumann. “It brings joy to you that you’re helping somebody to get through that horrible time that you went through.”
Inspired by Grace is also sponsoring the Recovery is Beautiful Festival this Saturday. The event takes place from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. at the Thomas M. Wenert Center.
If you or anyone you know is in distress or crisis, there is help available. Please call the Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-8255 or text the word “Talk” to 741741. You can remain anonymous.