OMAHA, Nebraska – On Saturday, families in Omaha commemorated their miscarried or stillborn children.
Today marked the eighth annual HEALs to the Pavement 5k at Turner Park in Midtown Crossing.
Omaha-based nonprofit The Collective for Hope organized the event. HEALing Embrace is affiliated with the group that focuses on pregnancy and newborn death.
The heartbreaking shared experience of infant loss brought the co-founders of HEALing Embrace together.
Between the two of them, seven infants were lost.
“It was after the death of my third child that…
My third child, Silas, died during delivery when he was 42 weeks old, and I was horrified, said Shawna Hoffman, co-founder of the HEALing Embrace.
Shawna had two miscarriages prior to the death of her son Silas.
“After his death, I was given an entire bundle of information. Here’s support groups. Here are phone numbers for support. Here is information on local resources. And this information was not provided to me following my first two defeats, and I was really confused as to why.”
Hoffman stated, “Therefore, we set out to create a community and a safe area in which to discuss our children, which the rest of the world told us or made us feel we couldn’t discuss.”
The Evans are one of the families that have benefited from this Collective for Hope community. They lost twin boys in 2019. Saturday they honored their sons’ memory.
“We are here because we lost our twins, Jude and Everett, in 2019, and we want to show our support to other mothers, fathers, brothers, and sisters who have also suffered a loss. Remembering our babies and expressing their tale makes our hearts feel better,” said Laura Evans.
Other families attended to enjoy a memorial with their children’s names, arts and crafts to help children remember their siblings, and music as they walked around Turner Park in memory of their children.