Betty O’Neill-Roderick

Summer whites were the attire for a Summer White Linen Gala & Art Auction held at Portage Country Club Friday evening. Dr. Phillip Martucci and his wife, Susan, co-chaired the event, a fundraiser for the GriefCare Place.

Sisters Wendy and Katie Kuzmushin and Daria Chalupa welcomed guests, who had the opportunity to meet the artists whose works were on display around the club. Becky Costello admired a watercolor painting of sunflowers by Deanna Clucas. Marianne Hite discussed her fused glass work with Mona Bishop and Jerilyn Yama admired the pottery by artist Mary Anne Focazio.

“Some people drink coffee. I paint with coffee,” explained J. Bradley House as he enjoyed the event with Lauren Bokiesch and Allison Hirsch. Dan Maxymiv explained how he achieved the cuddle fishbone texture on his work. The silversmith and his mother, Susan, who serves on the board, gathered the artists for the event.

The String Quartet played background music while Tony and Leslie Cocozzo, Richard Milford, Marti and Gerry Cowden, Eric and Lauren Wagner, Gary and Linda Lyell, Lou and Janet Palcko and Eric and Lauren Burden Weber looked over the work by local artists.

Tom Stephan, president of the board, thanked everyone for supporting GriefCare Place, which serves 58 communities in Northeast Ohio. He said the group just finished a camp for children who had lost a parent or sibling. Stephan introduced committee members and paid tribute to Eileen Berg, honorary chairwoman and loyal supporter of GriefCare Place.

Executive Director Lou-Ann Redmon, who founded GriefCare Place in 1997, said the organization offers support group programs without cost and individual counseling by a licensed professional. She thanked everyone who offered time, talent and treasures to the organization. Costello told of her journey through grief following the death of her husband, Tim, and the support she received at GriefCare Place, where she now volunteers.