The program artwork featured butterflies and dragonflies, with a poem on the inner cover that set me sobbing just reading it through:
Like the butterfly who lights beside us
like a sunbeam -
for a brief moment
its glory and beauty
belong to our world -
but then it flies on again.
And though we wish it could have stayed
we are so thankful to have seen it.
There was music played by hospital staff - cello, violin, keyboard and 2 voices - doctor, security guard, and 3 music therapists, more music - by Hugworks, Jim Newton and Paul G. Hill, a welcome by the bereavement coordinator, a Call to Remember, read by a chaplain, "I Believe" performed by Hugworks, a physician's tribute read by one of the doctors, "I Know Your Names"
Then the remembrance, where a staff person read names while pictures were projected on the screen at the front. The names were in groups of 10. The photos showed the children... the smallest a tiny tiny premie whose hand was maybe the size of a quarter, fingers wrapped around his daddy's index finger, the oldest my Margret.
My husband sat next to me, but on my other side, I sat next to a girl of about 7 or 8 years. She had been sitting with her Grammy and Mom in the row behind, but moved forward a row to sit next to her cousin. Her baby brother was among the lost. When his name was read, both she and her mother screamed and cried aloud. I patted her back, and gave her a tissue. When tears ran freely down my cheeks at my daughter's photo and name, she patted my knee and whispered to me, "Don't cry, you'll be OK."
After the names came a reading of "We Remember Them", from Gates of Prayer, "If I Could" performed by Hugworks, a reading of "Waterbugs and Dragonflies" a story of metamorphosis
Afterwards, there were helium filled butterfly balloons, was space where the parents could get together and talk, and have coffee and snacks. I chatted with the mothers of two young ladies who died of cancer, ages 22 and 23.
I tried to write about the memorial before, and kept dissolving into tears. It didn't help me that husband found the particular arrangement of Over the Rainbow/Wonderful world medley that they did - it's on youtube, by Israel Kamakawiwo'Ole - and played it multiple times. (probably because there are many versions of it on youtube) It's beautiful, but it makes me cry. Here are a couple versions...