By Tammy Moore Teague
CNW Headstone Foundation provides the service one would expect from its namesake. The local non-profit organization, Chelsey and William’s Headstone Foundation, was birthed out of heartbreak, and gave way to a mission to help ease the burden of others who’ve faced loss and hardship.
Husband and wife team, Roy and Brooklyn Holtz, co-founded the foundation. “When our son William died we had no idea the cost of a headstone. Were it not for our community, friends, and family he still would not have a headstone,” Brooklyn Holtz said. “Once we buried him we walked around and looked at what I call his new “neighbors”. We found Chelsey, who had only had a temp metal marker since the 90’s. It broke our hearts and we knew we had to do something. We talked about it for awhile and decided we wanted to do something, anything, to help other people. You would be surprised at how many people struggle with death related expenses for one reason or another. My husband and I hated the thought of others having to do without. We started the foundation so every person can receive a headstone and their life be remembered and honored.”
In September of this year, CNW Headstone Foundation was formed. After purchasing the headstones for William and Chelsey, the Holtz set a goal. “Our goal is to make sure that no person has to be buried without a marker of their life on this Earth.”
To date, they have been able to provide one headstone, and two others are on the list. This work, however, requires funding to continue. The foundation is pursuing a 501 non-profit status and is funded solely by donations and sponsorships. “The community is giving back to the community,” Brooklyn Holtz added. Donations are needed. Currently, the foundation has a GoFundMe account set up. Additionally, the foundation is selling custom t-shirts on bonfire.com. Brooklyn Holtz designed the shirts. Her sister-in-law and artist, Lana Laughlin, donated the logo.
“If we are able to make this happen at the level we want it to, it will be like William and Chelsey did not die in vain. Their little lives served such a huge purpose and they will have touched so many lives, even after theirs ended.”
If you aren’t able to donate, and would still like to help, there is a need for volunteers. If you’re interested you can fill out an application here.
By Tammy Moore Teague