Texas Regional Military Survivor Seminar and Good Grief Camp Brings Together Families of America’s Fallen Military Heroes

TAPS Event Helps Adults and Children to Connect with Peers, Honor their Loved Ones, Find Hope and Healing


ARLINGTON, Va. – The family members of America's fallen military heroes will gather at the Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS) Texas Regional Survivor Seminar and Good Grief Camp, Feb. 23-25 at Fort Hood in Killeen.  This event brings together nearly 400 family members to share their stories of love and loss, learn ways to cope with grief and find healing in their shared experiences.

“TAPS regional seminars bring together military families grieving a fallen hero and provide support, resources, and compassionate care,” said Bonnie Carroll, TAPS president and founder and a 2015 Presidential Medal of Freedom recipient. “Through these weekends of sharing held by TAPS around the nation, grieving military families find comfort and healing as they honor those who have served and died.”

For adults, the three-day seminar features sessions led by experts in the field of grief and loss, suicide, trauma and bereavement. Four categories of workshops follow a dynamic curriculum based on the needs of mourning set forth in academia. These categories are Acknowledge and Honor, Skill Building, Adjusting to a New Normal, and Meaning and Purpose. In addition to learning ways to cope with traumatic loss in the workshops, families will find support and comfort from connecting with peers in sharing groups.

For children, the TAPS Good Grief Camp will be led by experts in child development, mental health and education. It provides a safe space for military children to explore grief and embrace healing, and allows children and teens to learn coping skills through games, crafts and other age-appropriate activities. Children will gain a network of new friends their own age who are also grieving a fallen hero, learn that they are not alone in their grief, connect with a military mentor one on one, and come to understand that they are now part of an American legacy of service and sacrifice. 

Over 200 volunteers from the Fort Hood community will assist in supporting the families, helping out with the Good Grief Camp Zone on Friday night, during the Saturday workshops and the activities on Sunday. This includes the service members who have volunteered to be trained as mentors for surviving children attending the Good Grief Camp. Additional assistance for the Texas Regional Seminar is being provided by TAPS community partners H-E-B, including volunteer support and refreshments for attendees, and USAA, who are providing military mentor volunteers from their Veteran Resource Group.


Saturday, Feb. 24 from 9 to 10 a.m. - Opening Ceremonies
Get photos and video of TAPS President and Founder Bonnie Carroll, as they welcome families to the seminar. Interviews are available following the ceremony with Ms. Carroll, grief experts and surviving military families attending the seminar.

All interview and coverage opportunities will be at Fort Hood; media wanting to attend should meet at the gate at 8:30 a.m. Point of contact for media access is Mr. Christopher Haug at Fort Hood Public Affairs at (254) 449-4023.       

FOR INTERVIEW: Bonnie Carroll, TAPS President and Founder
                          Renowned experts on traumatic grief, loss and bereavement
                          Gabriel Rao,
TAPS Manager, Community Engagement and surviving brother, of
                          Whitney, Texas
                          Renee Monczynski, TAPS Young Adult Coordinator and surviving spouse, of Waco,
                          Mary Rose Johnson, surviving mother, of San Antonio
                          Cindy Hildner, surviving spouse, of San Antonio
                          Diane Christy, surviving spouse and surviving mother, of Austin
                          Joan Jefferson, surviving mother, of Dallas
                          Cheryl Lankford, surviving spouse, of San Antonio

The Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS) is the national organization providing compassionate care for the families of America’s fallen military heroes and has offered support to more than 75,000 surviving family members of our fallen military and their caregivers since 1994. TAPS provides peer-based emotional support, grief and trauma resources, grief seminars and retreats for adults, Good Grief Camps for children, case work assistance, connections to community-based care, online and in-person support groups and a 24/7 resource and information helpline for all who have been affected by a death in the Armed Forces. Services are provided free of charge. For more information go to www.taps.org or call the toll-free TAPS resource and information helpline at 1.800.959.TAPS (8277).