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Ruckersville Funeral Home Will Hold Holiday Remembrance Service - NBC29 WVIR Charlottesville, VA News, Sports and Weather

Ruckersville Funeral Home Will Hold Holiday Remembrance Service

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For many people, the best part of the holiday season is being around friends and family. But for those who have recently lost loved ones, getting into the Christmas spirit can be a challenge.

Tuesday night, Ryan Funeral Home in Ruckersville is holding a holiday remembrance service to give people a space where they can grieve the loss of loved ones and find comfort in knowing that they aren't alone.

"Even though we see death all the time, it's still—when it's a loved one or someone you know—it's very different," said funeral director Donnie Lamb.

The staff at Ryan Funeral Home knows firsthand how death can affect family, especially when people are celebrating Christmas for the first time without a loved one.

"All the firsts are hard: first birthdays, the anniversary, Christmas, Valentine's Day," said manager Ashleigh Coffey.

"As of 2011, in January I lost my father, so around the holidays it is a very emotional time for me and my family," said Lamb.

After the overwhelming response it received last year, the funeral home is getting ready for its second annual holiday remembrance service.

"It's just a time for all the families that we've had the opportunity to serve to come back and give something back to them," said Coffey.

It's also a time for families to heal, realizing they share a common bond with others. The service hopes to unite people by providing words of comfort through a message and prayer, and celebrate the lives of those who've passed on with a special candlelight vigil.

"Sometimes it helps with that closure and gives them a little more peace, and they realize too that, ‘I'm not going through this alone,' that other people are experiencing a death as well," said owner Sarita Ryan Powers.

Powers says it's important that families cling to each other, and not let a death tear them apart. She also recommends coming up with new traditions that honor the person that has passed on. But perhaps the best piece of advice is to take it one day at a time.

"I always tell families let's get through today and we'll worry about tomorrow, tomorrow," said Powers.

The candlelight vigil will begin at 6 p.m. Tuesday at Ryan Funeral Home in Ruckersville. Families will also receive a special ornament as a keepsake.

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