The operators of Pocono Medical Center are offering free grief counseling to residents of Monroe County's Chestnuthill and Ross townships, following Monday night's shooting tragedy in the Ross Township Municipal Building.
"We will do whatever we need to do to help navigate people through this," explained hospital spokesman Geoffrey Roche. "It's part of our commitment to the community."
Roche, the hospital's community/government relations coordinator, said anyone trying to cope with the tragedy in which three men were killed, should call him at 570-476-3767. Roche said other county residents also should call.
He will put them in contact with grief counselors on the hospital staff, including Dr. Sherrie Sneed, director of pastoral care.
“There are moments in time that defy explanation," said Sneed in a statement about the Ross Township shooting.
"No matter how much information we comprehend in our heads, we will never understand in our hearts.
"The events in Ross Township are just such a time. This will be a time forever etched into our memories as other times of crisis have come to be. We will not forget. We surely will grieve our loss of innocence, of our understanding of who and what we were before Monday evening and, most especially, for those who were mortally wounded.
"This is what family does. As the Monroe County family, we will do what we do best – care for each other. We will reach out in the midst of this painful time to reassure and comfort.”
Pocono Heath System, owner of Pocono Medical Center, also is planning a community healing event in mid-September at the hospital. Roche said details will be announced.