Grief Management

Nancy Olumekor

August 27, 2021

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(This article first appeared in the September-October issue of the American Postal Worker magazine)

When I attended the quarterly meeting of the Denver Metro Retiree Chapter on ZOOM, held on July 24, I was inspired to write this article about “grief.” At the end of the meeting while greeting members, we were surprised to learn that when one member lost his wife in April, his grief was overwhelming. Everyone immediately embraced him, virtually. Then, another member, who others knew had lost his wife in March, shared his story; sharing that he was part of a group who helped him cope with his loss. They called themselves “ROMEO” – Retired Old Men Eat Out. This was an example of an important function of our Retiree Chapters: reaching out, embracing and helping each other.

According to, one of the critical factors in healing from grief is the support of other people. Being able to share your story or your feelings is vital to the healing process. We grieve loss in different ways; while we may not get over our loss, we will survive it. You can find support in various places: faith-based groups, support groups, therapists or counselors. tells us, when you’re grieving, it is both important and difficult to take care of yourself. Your loss may take away your energy, your appetite and your emotional reserves. makes four points to remember:

  • Allow yourself to grieve: Unresolved grief can lead to other problems.
  • Express your feelings in a tangible way: Whether it’s getting involved in an organization, making a financial donation, or another method of creative expression.
  • Be physically healthy: Physical health helps with the emotional healing process.
  • Don’t judge yourself, or let others judge you: You are allowed to grieve for as long and as deeply as you need to.

The pandemic has taken a deep emotional toll on all of us. The CDC says that “grief can happen in response to loss of life, as well as to drastic changes to daily routines and ways of life that usually bring us comfort and stability.” Some people, the CDC says, may experience multiple losses during a disaster or emergency event. These losses can happen at the same time, which can complicate or prolong grief and delay a person’s ability to adapt, heal, and recover.

It is normal to feel grief about “lost time” due to COVID-19 lockdowns and quarantines. After all, time is the most precious commodity.

Dolores Young, APWU Retiree Delegate Passes Away

The APWU Retirees Department was saddened by the death on July 24, 2021 of Dolores Young, APWU Retiree Delegate to the National Convention for the Northeast Region. Sister Young served as the Northeast Region APWU Retiree Delegate to the National Convention for the past ten years. Dolores began her postal career in 1963. She was a full dues paying member of APWU for over 50 years as member of the New York Metro Area Postal Union. Dolores was part of the Great Postal Strike of 1970 and is featured in the APWU Great Postal Strike Video and in New York Metro’s, Passing the Torch video.

Dolores was a union activist and over the years she served the APWU in numerous positions as a local shop steward and officer, APWU POWER Coordinator and alternate for the Northeast Region, and the Moe Biller-Eleanor Bailey Retiree Chapter secretary, treasurer and vice president. Dolores’ many years of dedication to APWU is recognized, acknowledged and appreciated by all who knew her; she was fondly referred to as “Mama D.”

The evidence of her work and her spirit will be remembered by all of whom she touched. Dolores Young was a beautiful person with a wonderful smile and personality to match.

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