History of the Determination to Bring the Angel of Hope to the Tampa Bay area.
“I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples.” – Mother Teresa
Since 2009, bereaved families of the Tampa Bay area have had an Angel of Hope Memorial Garden to call their own. It was a labor of love for so many, including Beverley and David Hurley.
Beverley Hurley said she got the idea of creating a after visiting the Angel of Hope garden in St. Louis, where 1,000 people had gathered in a ceremony to remember someone they had lost.
Angel of Hope Milestones
- In 2003, the effort to create an Angel of Hope Memorial Garden was announced by the Tampa Bay chapter of Bereaved Parents of the USA and a new Angel of Hope Committee and 501c3 was formed.
- The Bereaved Parents of Tampa Bay partnered with AMEND, a pregnancy loss support group, to create a site-selection committee and generate community support for the project.
- Angel of Hope Tampa Bay needed to raise $100,000 to create an Angel of Hope Memorial Garden, including a bronze winged angel holding outstretched arms.
- It took five more years to raise the money and acquire approval from the City of Temple Terrace for a home.
- The Memorial Garden broke ground July 27, 2009, was dedicated October 4, 2009, and held the first Candlelight at the Angel December 6, 2009.
Beverley was the force behind the development of the Angel of Hope Memorial Garden located in Temple Terrace, Fla. Her tireless efforts over five years to overcome numerous setbacks and disappointments resulted in one of the most beautiful Angel of Hope memorials in the country.
Hurley lost her oldest daughter, Debbie, in 1990. Soon after, she joined Bereaved Parents and got involved with helping other grieving parents. “You heal by helping others, and in turn they help others.”
Beverley was active in the Bereaved Parents of the USA since Debbie’s death in 1990. She served six years on the national board, including two years as national president; served as the chair of the Tampa Bay Chapter beginning in 2000; and, founded the Angel of Hope Committee. No one can count the number of people she assisted in their darkest hour of need.
Through all of her efforts, she enjoyed the support of her loving husband, David Hurley who had served as Treasurer for the Bereaved Parents of the USA for several years.
The memorial Garden complete with an angel statue and more than 200 engraved bricks is located at Riverside Park on Riverhills Drive in Temple Terrace.
The Angel of Hope comes from the Richard Paul Evans book The Christmas Box, about a couple who lose their only child and erect an angel statue to remember the child. There are more than 130 memorial gardens nationwide as documented by the Kansas Angel of Hope site.
Dozens of local and national companies and businesses have donated their services and cash to build and maintain the garden, and the city of Temple Terrace set aside a section of the half-acre park.
“This is going to be something that is very hopeful,” said Beverly Hurley, director of Angel of Hope Tampa Bay. “It is not like going to a cemetery. It is very healing and uplifting.”
Beverley Hurley passed away in 2011 and her husband David Hurley in 2020, but their legacy lives on. This website is hosted and managed in honor of the indelible memory they left on so many.
Beverley and David Hurley were both honored with the “They Really Made A Difference” Award from the Bereaved Parents.
They Really Made A Difference Award is given posthumously to a BPUSA member who has made extraordinary contributions to the organization, usually over a sustained period of time. These contributions have made a significant difference in the strength and ability of BPUSA to comfort and support families as they rebuild their lives after the death of their children.
- 2012 Beverley Hurley
- 2021 David Hurley
The History of the Angel of Hope
Introduced to the world in the best-selling book “The Christmas Box,” by Richard Paul Evans, a beautiful story of a couple whose only child dies and they have an Angel statue set as a place to go to remember their child. The Angel of Hope Memorial Garden, Tampa Bay, will be a peaceful refuge for parents to remember their children that have left them at too early an age. The bronze winged angel, will become a gathering place for caring families for Tampa Bay and the surrounding areas.
This statue, called The Angel of Hope, has become a retreat for many bereaved families. There are more than 135 of these angels set as Memorials Worldwide.
- A GARDEN FOR REMEMBERING LOST … – Tampa Bay Times
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Angel of Hope Memorial Garden
is a Florida 501(c)(3) Corporation.