COATESVILLE (December 23, 2019) – The holidays are typically a time of joy, family traditions, and gatherings with friends but for those who have lost loved ones, the season can take on a different meaning – a poignant reminder of the grief they live with every day.

Families like Greg and Dorrie DePedro, owners of the Coatesville Flower Shop, seek to utilize this reminder for good, as they help others honor and remember their loved ones during the season and throughout the year.

Fifteen years ago, the DePedro’s daughter, Lisa, tragically passed away from a rare form of cancer. In honor of her legacy to “do something nice for someone today,” they began a project to give away free roses every August.

Since then, they estimate that they have distributed more than 100,000 roses for free – with customers given one dozen roses with the understanding that they keep one for themselves and give the other 11 to different people who need a smile. The DePedros especially encourage families of lost loved ones to participate, to spread happiness and remember their family members.

Recently, state Senator Andy Dinniman visited their shop, and presented them a Senate citation to recognize 15 years of “Lisa’s Roses.”

“Greg and Dorrie DePedro have opened their hearts and their shop to the community to help cope with their loss and celebrate Lisa’s life,” Dinniman said. “To take what their family is going through, share it with others, and hopefully use it to spark joy, in many ways, embodies the best character of the Holiday season.”

 “We especially feel that Christmas time is a difficult time for parents who have lost their children. So, we want to bring Christmas love into their hearts in any way we can,” said Dorrie.

This idea of Christmas love becomes evident as soon as one walks into the Coatesville Flower Shop’s doors. Poinsettia arrangements are placed immaculately around the entranceway, and all sorts of holiday decorations add to the cheery, warm atmosphere of the shop. Greg and Dorrie echo this welcoming feeling to all during the Christmas and Holiday season.

“During the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, let’s all keep in mind that some of us may be grieving and feelings of loss may be more poignant. So, let us cherish who we have and remember who we have lost in the warmest of light. And let’s strive to do something nice for someone now and throughout the year,” Dinniman said. “As the saying goes, ‘It is better to give than to receive.’”

The Coatesville Flower Shop is located at 259 East Lincoln Highway in Coatesville.