App helps family, friends share memories of passed loved ones

 In Cambria County, entrepreneur, News

[Appeared on WTAJ-TV on May 4th, 2019]

CRESSON, CAMBRIA COUNTY, Pa. (WTAJ) — After witnessing the emotional-final sendoff of his friend’s father, Tom McConnell was moved to help others keep the memories of loved ones alive.

“It touched me. It was very moving, It was on the news, and it was on Facebook, and I watched it over and over again, and I wanted a way to tell his story,” McConnell said.

Inside each kit from Eternal Remembrance is an emblem you can mount on the person’s tombstone and a matching coin to hold onto. There’s also an activation code to create a memorial page for the loved one through their website, sharing stories, videos, and photos with anyone who knew them.

“Something that people can’t seem to let go of is in their cellphones, those voicemails, so this is a nice platform to be able to be engaged and in a dynamic fashion to be able to continually tell that story of the individual,” José Luis Otero, Entrepreneur and Innovation Coach for Startup Alleghenies, said.

People can also drop GPS pins at important places in the person’s life.

“Maybe a hole-in-one that they had or their favorite hiking trial,” McConnell said.

And while every person has their own way of grieving, Otero said sharing memories of a loved one can bring people together and start healing.

“I, myself, have had those experiences where sometimes it’s hard to let go of people, and I know of a lot of other people that are in the similar mental thought process,” he said.

“I can start to record messages for my great grandkids that I will never meet, so they can learn about me first hand, as well.”

McConnell said the website and app can connect people who knew the person who passed.

“There’s so many pictures of me on other people’s phones…we meet people at conferences and we meet people around the country, and if I were to pass away, who knows where people might have memories that could be able to share them with my family,” he said.

And if you want to leave behind something for your family, you can start creating your page and leave posts for future generations to see.

“I can start to record messages for my great grandkids that I will never meet, so they can learn about me first hand, as well,” Otero said.