Tree of Lights ceremony set for Thursday

By Dick Mason, The Observer December 05, 2012 01:42 pm

Family members, friends remember those who passed

Memories of loved ones so cherished that their embers will never be extinguished  will burn brightly late Thursday evening.

The lives of people who have touched the hearts of others before passing on will be remembered at 5:30 p.m. at the annual Tree of Lights ceremony.

A Christmas tree at Pat’s Alley, 1414 Adams Ave., will be lighted for the event. The tree’s primary decorations are red remembrance cards for people who have died.  

The names of these individuals will be read at the ceremony from cards, which have stirring messages.

One card reads: “May you see from heaven our love for you.’’ 

The Tree of Lights ceremony started in 1995, in part to comfort people who have lost loved ones in recent years.

The Tree of Lights will remain up through the holiday season. People who would like to put up cards honoring loved ones can obtain them from any hospice volunteer or Fitzgerald’s Flowers, 1414 Adams Ave.; Sunflower Books, 114 Washington Ave.; and Home Care Health  Services Home Health and Hospice, 802 Sunset Drive. 

A $5 donation is suggested for each card. All proceeds from the event go each year to Home Care Services Home Health and Hospice.

The organization’s professional staff gives nursing assistance for people with terminal illness. Its volunteers provide support of all types, from giving caregivers a break to shopping.

The ceremony at Pat’s Alley is open to everyone, not just family and friends of those who have received hospice care. 

The names of everyone who have been honored at the Tree of Lights since it started, are recorded in two “Books of Names.’’ The books are at Pat’s Alley and are available for everyone to read.