Gregorys to be honored in Dover

Gregorys to be honored in Dover

Rev. Doug Gregory and Dr. Sonji Gregory


On March 9 at 5 p.m. during the contemporary service, Grace Lutheran Church in Dover will honor Rev. Doug Gregory and Dr. Sonji Gregory with the Community Partner Award for their grief counseling work with the Tusky Valley community done at their church since last December at no cost. The community is invited to come to the Grace Lutheran Church sanctuary at 108 W. Third St. in Dover.

Doug and Sonji Gregory have reached out to the community to offer grief services to families affected by the Tusky Valley bus tragedy that occurred on Nov. 14, 2023, which took the lives of students John Mosley, Katelyn Owens and Jefferey Worrell; teacher Dave Kennat; and parent chaperones Kristy Gaynor and Shannon Wigfield.

In coordination with Pastor Bonnie Grimaldi of Grace Evangelical Lutheran Church of Dover and the ADAMHS Board of Tuscarawas County, Doug Gregory, a bereavement specialist, and Sonji Gregory, an associate professor in counseling, facilitated a seven-week grief group for the families that had children on the bus during the accident. The topics covered included normal grief, processing feelings, keeping memories alive, coping strategies and parenting children exposed to trauma.

In addition, Doug and Sonji Gregory were present at the vigil to offer support to the students the night of the accident. They also have offered individual support including referrals to clinical counseling for families as needed. Doug and Sonji Gregory live south of Navarre, have been married for 27 years and have three adult children.

The couple believes the true heroes were the adults who risked their lives to rescue and comfort the students on the bus: Josh Chieka, Kim Charton, Merrie Gensley, Jason Peterson, Alaina Miller, Stephen Tripp and Don Wagler.

For more information regarding Grace Happens contemporary worship service or any ministry at Grace Lutheran Church, call the church office at 330-343-6915 or visit

Grace Lutheran Church is located on the southwest corner of Third Street and North Wooster Avenue in downtown Dover.

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