About

Update:  Sadly, due to poor attendance over the last several years, both in person and virtually since the beginning of the pandemic, monthly meetings have been discontinued.  Meetings may still be scheduled on an as needed basis.  Please contact Angela West by email at angela@mapsofmastery.com, or by phone at (814)774-7064 and I will arrange a meeting for you either virtually or in person at a safe location, with as many members as I can gather.  I will continue to hold a virtual memorial service on the second Tuesday in October at 7:30 pm.  The meeting link will be posted on this blog and on the private Facebook page.  Empty Arms is a support group that meets monthly on the second Tuesday of every month.  We meet at Liberty Family Practice, 3414 Cherry Street, Erie, PA 16508, with meetings beginning at 7:30 pm.  Empty Arms is intended for those who have lost babies, from the first weeks of pregnancy through babyhood.  We have had members who have lost older children, as well, and those with all such losses are welcome.  Please always respect the feelings and losses of others, both in meetings and on this page.  We are here to support each other, and all our babies are deeply loved and mourned, regardless of age.  Also, please be sure not to use offensive language, and if you have a bad experience with medical personnel to share, please do not mention their names.  If you have questions about the group, please feel free to call Patty McGuinness at (814)838-6346 or Angela and Chris West at (814)774-7064, or email us at angela@mapsofmastery.com.

Empty Arms began in 1982 upon the stillbirth of Mary McGuinness, daughter of our founders, Patty and Jim McGuinness. Joining Patty in her efforts to help those who have suffered such tragic loss were Carol Cacchione and Judy Inman, Labor and Delivery nurses from the two Erie hospitals. These three women have touched the lives of countless parents over the past thirty years. While they have mostly retired from ‘active duty’ they are the soul of Empty Arms, and we are eternally grateful to them.

Currently, the group is led by Angela West, Kate Edgett and Rose Surma.  Angela, editor of this page, lost three babies to early miscarriage:  Angel at five weeks, River at 7 weeks and Aidan at 11 weeks.  She has two living children, Ethan, born before the losses, and Elanor, born after the losses.  Kate lost two babies to early miscarriage, and Molly Kathleen  at 20 weeks.  She has six living children.  Rose’s son Dylan was stillborn. She has two living children, born before her loss.

If you are a member of Empty Arms and would like to contribute a post to this blog, please email me at angela@mapsofmastery.com or via the form below.

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