Deborah Duda, a Kauaʻi resident and author, not long ago released the revised and updated fourth edition of Coming Home – A Practical and Compassionate Guide to Caring for a Dying Loved One (Synergy Books, Paperback, October 2010, $16.95).


My mentors for the first [edition], in 1981, were Mother Teresa and Elisabeth Kubler-Ross.


She emailed us and asked if we’d take a look at her book and put her upcoming event information on our calendar. We of course agreed to put up her event info, but regarding the review… at first I was hesitant, it’s not quite the kind of book you casually “review”. She sent it to us anyway and though I pray that I myself or any of you, never have need of it, I’m grateful that such a book exists.

Picking up a book is probably the last thing you think of in such a situation, but you’ll probably need all the help you can get and having a well organized reference guide like Coming Home can make a big difference. But it’s more than just a how-to of home care. There’s advice, information and guidance on all things from the technical aspects of care, to the emotional, legal and even social issues that need to be addressed.

Coming Home really is “practical and compassionate”, two things you need if you’re taking on the daunting task of caring for sick loved ones at home. The book starts with Deborah talking about her own experiences caring for her own loved ones and immediately the book brings you in on a personal level. This book is also well researched with appendices for important documents, a bibliography of cited sources, and pages of books and links to use as resources and further reference.

There’s good advice in here even if you are not caring for a sick relative or friend. The information on writing wills, living wills and health care proxies is very useful for everyone. It’s everything you need to know—simple and concise without coming off as clinical or flowery; Deborah Duda has crafted a useful and caring book.

Deborah has been a Kauaʻi resident for 29 years.  She helped found Kauaʻi Hospice.  When Hurricane Iniki devastated the island, she served as a regional coordinator for a FEMA mental health recovery program.  After the program ended, she spent four years in Mexico working in a holistic health retreat center.

When Deborah returned to Kauaʻi, she was concerned about a sense of lack of meaning and joy among young people. She decided to commit five years to them and become a teacher.  After completing an education program at University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, she used teaching Spanish in a middle school as a vehicle to help young people expand their vision of possibilities for their lives.

Read more about Deborah here.

Event Info!

Deborah Duda will be doing a talk story and book signing at Barnes and Noble, Kahala Mall on Friday, April 22, from 1:00 p.m to 4:00 p.m.  She will also be interviewed that same day at 7:45 am on Channel 2, KHON.