What People Are Saying About
SacredFlight and Music-Thanatology

“SacredFlight music-thanatologists skillfully assess the patient’s state of being and physical needs. Through personal presence and carefully selected music they bring greater peace to dying patients and their families.”

Susan Tolle, MD
OHSU Center for Ethics in Health Care

“The people who come together to form SacredFlight are so amazing. They seem to have an empathy and understanding for the dying that comes through in their music. They both ease the patient’s transition and help families to grieve and accept their loved one’s passing. SacredFlight touches people in a place that talk therapy cannot.”

Susan L. Swanson, LCSW
Legacy Cancer Services

“We continue to be impressed by the results of SacredFlight’s sessions with dying patients and their families. The presence brought by each harpist has been as important to the families as the music has been for the patient. You and your work have been able to turn around chaotic, fearful, and painful experiences into times of healing peace, and release both from suffering and even physical pain. Often, the changes in a patient’s dying experience have been dramatic and families have been able to embrace the process with greater acceptance and more genuine support. SacredFlight has become known throughout the hospital as one of the best and most helpful clinical resources in our efforts to support and care for dying patients. Our gratitude cannot be adequately expressed.”

The Rev. Canon Patrick A. Tomter
Legacy Good Samaritan Hospital Department of Spiritual Care

“Your music touched our souls and helped comfort and soothe all of us in the room. In particular, it helped ease Mom’s pain and her passing. You are clearly in touch with your music—your voice blended splendidly with the harp. It was exquisite and did all of us a world of good in our time of grief. What a wonderful service you provide for those who are mourning the death of a dear one.”

Daughter of patient

“Music-thanatology should be a standard of practice in palliative care.”

Kathleen Moneymaker RN, CHPN
Palliative Care Nurse Consultant and End-of-Life Counselor
Legacy Health System

“The harp led the angels to us that day and provided us calm and peace in such a distressing time. We were enriched with comfort by the strings of the harp.”

Family of patient

“The harp music wasn’t like any music I had heard before... it was like it reached deep inside (the patient) and played his soul.”

ICU nurse

“When the music began she just relaxed and her moaning stopped. She died so peacefully—with the music.”

Daughter of patient

“[Dad’s] death was a very sacred moment and having you continue to play helped ease us into the void created when his soul departed.”

Daughter of patient

“Thank you so much for offering your gift of music at [my mother’s] bedside. I know the deep relaxation helped her to release this life and move to the next. It also touched me powerfully. Blessings and peace be upon you now and always.”

Daughter of patient


   by Marlena Nelson

   Soothing the Spirit,
      As SacredFlight
         Brings Music from Heaven –
            Both loving and bright.

Their songs, like the Angels’,
   Are such a delight –
      All anguish subsides,
         The heart becomes light.

A calmness descends,
   Soon fear is in flight –
      While comforting music
         Lasts into the night.