Spirituality and suicide: grace in the face of tragedy

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Mother discusses reclaiming life after daughter’s suicide in new book

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I vowed to share my experiences to show there is light at the end of the tunnel.

Jean Vaughn knows about persevering through life’s unimaginables.

When her daughter left a heated argument and stabbed herself to death in the other room, Vaughn picked up the pieces.

In her new memoir Afterglow: A Test of the Human Spirit, Vaughn shares her story of triumphing after tragedy.

“I vowed to share my experiences to show there is light at the end of the tunnel,” Vaughn says. “I was able to get through my child’s suicide with a zest for life.”

Vaughn says she also sought to provide a resource for the day-to-day realities of mourning, which she couldn’t find during her own grieving process.

Vaughn also shares, page by page, her story of an unstable early life, two unsuccessful marriages and surviving domestic abuse.

Her two daughters, one who committed suicide, suffered from the genetic disorder Ataxia, which affects muscle coordination.

“For years I yearned for a solid foundation and self worth,” she says. “It’s all the more meaningful now, and I have such gratitude for life.”

Afterglow: A Test of Human Spirit
By Jean Vaughn
ISBN: 978-1-4525-4986-6
Softcover retail price: $12.99
Hardcover retail price: $30.95
E-book price: $3.99

About the author
Jean Vaughn is a guest lecturer at a local community college in western Pennsylvania. She raised two daughters with the genetic disorder Ataxia, one who died from suicide. Vaughn is passionate about sharing her story to encourage others to overcome difficulties. Her writings and lectures come from a place of deep joy, passion and commitment.

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Courtney Stiehl