The best connection you can make with someone is to share and have them realize that they are not alone, that there are others going through the same thing,” says Erin Davis, author of Mourning Has Broken: Love, Loss and Reclaiming Joy. (HarperCollins).
Erin Davis is a name that is well known to the legions of fans who listened to her for decades on the CHFI 98.1 morning show. These listeners served their families breakfast, got their kids ready for school, and rushed off to work, all the while tuned into 98.1 in order to be lifted up and entertained by Erin’s wry wit and her intriguing good-humoured take on the world. Erin had many co-hosts along the way including Don Daynard, Bob Magee, Darren B. Lamb, Erin & Darren in the Morning, and Mike Cooper. Viewers also got to see Erin on W Network TV, as well as on her nightly talk show on Rogers Television.
Ever popular and always the most upbeat person in the room, in the spring of 2015, Erin was in Jamaica MCing a listeners contest trip when she got a phone call that would forever reshape her and her husband Rob Whitehead’s world.
The couple’s only child, Lauren, then 24 and the mother of 7-month-old Colin, had gone to bed on the night of her very first Mother’s Day, but had not woken up the next morning.
It is every parents’ worst nightmare, an unimaginable tragedy that is impossible to process – in fact, impossible to even think about.
In fact, it is just as unimaginable to process what the four hour flight back to Toronto would have felt like, a tumultuous 240 minutes of turbulence in the soul that no amount of empathy or solace could assuage.
And so, after two funerals, one in Toronto and one in Ottawa, where Lauren lived and in fact worked as a news reader at Ottawa’s CFRA radio station, Erin and Rob began the long journey through their loss, a team unified in their determination to both survive and reclaim joy in their lives. It was a journey that not only required them to claw their own way through their grief, but also one that demanded their strength in helping and supporting Lauren’s husband Phil, and their infant grandson, Colin.
Inspiring and unflinching, in Mourning Has Broken, Erin and Rob sift through intimate memories and family stories, ones which they tell themselves in order to survive. Along the way, they become fluent in the language of loss, hope, grief and vulnerability.
Canadian singer and songwriter, Jann Arden, wrote the forward to Mourning Has Broken, and in it she states: “What Erin Davis has managed to articulate with her gut-wrenching and brilliantly inspiring memoir dumbfounds me. Page after page is filled with such grace and insight and openness that quite often I was wiping a tear off my cheek or a laugh from the corner of my mouth.
Erin’s memoir, “Mourning Has Broken: Love, Loss and Reclaiming Joy” was published in 2019 and went straight to #1 on the Globe and Mail non-fiction rankings. In addition to her writing and her hosting of three podcasts, Erin continues to write and shoot video for a semi-weekly journal that she’s been doing in one form or another for 19 years at erindavis.com