The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

Brazos County officials are distributing free backpacks, school supplies and gift cards for K-12 students on July 12 from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m. at the Bryan High Silver Campus Cafeteria.
Brazos County to distribute free school supplies
‘Back to School Bash’ invites K-12 families on July 12
Nicholas Gutteridge, Managing Editor • July 11, 2024
Texas A&M pitcher Chris Cortez (10) delivers a pitch during Texas A&M’s game against Tarleton State on Tuesday, April 30, 2024. (Chris Swann/The Battalion)
Cortez selected by Los Angeles Angels with 45th pick in 2024 MLB Draft
Luke White, Sports Editor • July 14, 2024

Junior RHP Chris Cortez was selected by the Los Angeles Angels with the 45th pick in the second round of the 2024 MLB Draft on Sunday, continuing...

Craig Reagans 1973 brown Mach 1 Mustang features custom stickers of Craig and his wife, and is completely rebuilt from the ground up. The interior was completely torn out and replaced with new dashboard and radio.
Compassion in the car community
Shalina Sabih, Sports Writer • July 9, 2024

This past Sunday, Cars and Coffee welcomed exactly one car: a sleek, brown Mustang that stood alone like a lone ranger in the Wild West. This...

Chancellor John Sharp during a Board of Regents meeting discussing the appointmet of interim dean Mark Welsh and discussion of a McElroy settlement on Sunday, July 30, 2023 in the Memorial Student Center.
Analysis: Chancellor Sharp’s retirement comes with new dilemmas
Nicholas Gutteridge, Managing Editor • July 2, 2024

Texas A&M System Chancellor John Sharp announced Monday he will be retiring on June 30, 2025.  A figure notorious in state politics,...

Tails of loss

Photo by Photo by Meredith Seaver

Wyatt, a border collie, was the reason Jim Vanbeek began visiting the Mending Hearts Grieving Center.

A support group in College Station is helping locals who are mourning after the loss of a family pet.
The Mending Hearts Grief Center hosts Tails of Loss, a support group meeting which meets once a month to discuss memories, stories and strategies to help with the loss of beloved furry friends. Elaine Brooks, Bill Armstrong, Joan Serber and Bonnie Beaver helped bring the group together in 2016.
Brooks has worked with the Trap, Neuter, and Return program for the last 15 years, which helps cats in the local area live better lives. She said the support group originated when she realized owners had no place to meet and support each other after losing their pets.
“It essentially all started between me and Bill Armstrong when we were talking at his house about animals and when they die, that there is no place to go when your pet dies,” Brooks said.
Serber has worked in hospice care in the Brazos Valley for the last 13 years and said the grieving process can take a very long time.
“One of things that we saw that, this sounds crazy, but some people even admitted at our meetings that they have grieved harder over their own pets than some family members,” Serber said.
Beaver, a veterinary medicine professor, held a meeting about pets and losses at Texas A&M in 2009. The event was advertised in the newspaper and hundreds of people showed up in attendance.
“With the event that Bonnie had years ago, it definitely was a launch pad for the meetings we have today, and with her knowledge of what she does in the world of pets is truly helpful in our meetings,” Brooks said.
Jim Vanbeek is one of the members that is attending group sessions to process of loss of his dog Wyatt, who died six weeks ago due to illness.
“Having something like this where you can talk to people that understand and share stories that know where you’re coming and what you’re going through definitely helps,” Vanbeek said.
Rebecca Galloway is also a member coming for her second time, as she has mourned the loss of her two cats Max and Phoebe.
“I came to the group and I’ve found this so helpful, because I couldn’t find a way to make it through,” Galloway said. “I would write poetry and make myself busy but I was just so grief stricken and I know I just need time.”
Tails of Loss is helping set up a pet memorial open to the public for anyone mourning or going through a loss. It will open this upcoming October at the Crestwood Airbrooks retirement home in College Station.
The support group meets the second Saturday out of the month 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. at the Mending Hearts Griefing Center in College Station. For updates, visit

Leave a Comment
Donate to The Battalion

Your donation will support the student journalists of Texas A&M University - College Station. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to The Battalion

Comments (0)

All The Battalion Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *