Students, faculty hold memorial for Meyer

Last night the Peace Lutheran Church was transformed into a banquet hall.

The students and faculty involved in the Student Council on Family Relations organized and held a memorial for the late Doug Meyer, husband of Laura Landry-Meyer, a professor in Human Development and Family Relations at the University.

About 50 people attended the event and all the proceeds from the dinner were donated to the Wood County Cocoon Shelter.

Each plate cost $15 and 100 percent of the money was donated directly to the shelter. Fifty plates could pay for a full week of safe emergency housing at the shelter and support to help a family live independently, said Michelle Clossick, the executive director of the Cocoon Shelter and a close friend of Doug Myers.

The Cocoon Shelter is the only domestic violence shelter in Wood County. Meyer was an advocate and was influential in the organization of Wood County’s first women’s shelter.

Its mission and vision is to serve the entire county, said Clossick.

“Since we have opened we have provided 600 nights of emergency housing for at least 100 women and children,” said Clossick. “I know that the Cocoon Shelter would not exist without the support of the community. Doug was just a model of that extraordinary support.”

Before the opening of the Cocoon Shelter, victims would have to flee to Toledo to find safety. Because these shelters were so far, victims would risk leaving their entire safety net and comfort zone, said Clossick.

The opening of the Cocoon Shelter made it much easier for women to find support and shelter in their own county.

Though the night was a memorial, the mood was far from cheerless.

“We say this is a memorial, but really that is such a somber word,” said SCFR president Ashley Albertson. “Really this is a celebration of his life.”

The SCFR has been planing the event since early this school year to honor Meyers who died in June of 2007. The event is the largest event in the organization’s history said Albertson.

“This is a huge undertaking and it was a great learning experience for all of us,” Albertson said.

Sophomore Jodi Carmack took charge and headed the organization of the event.

The Peace Lutheran Church was the home church of Doug Meyers and is still the church of Landry-Meyers and her family.

Meyers had a great influence on the parish and the community, said Pastor Debbie Conklin.

“Doug’s spirit is here every moment and we miss him desperately,” Conklin said. “He was someone who you could depend on, he kept things together in his own silent way.”

After dinner was served and all were full, community members spoke in honor of the late Meyers.

“Doug was an ordinary man with an extraordinary sense of justice and fairness and what was the right thing to do,” Clossick said. “He was a rare and good human being who, without trying, made a difference wherever he went.”