Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Sherry Wolf : A Mother's Memorial

For most parents, the death of a child is an illusory nightmare, the agent of unimaginable agony they never have to endure. For handbag designer Sherry Wolf, that nightmare was — and still is — a real-life tragedy.

After graduating from the University of Michigan with high honors, Sherry's daughter Chelsea Rae Propper moved to Manhattan to work for Fox Network. She was 22 years old, living her dream. Sherry Wolf was ever proud and eager to watch her daughter fashion a life as exciting and rewarding as Sherry's had been as young artist in New York.

Then, on Christmas Eve 2009, someone spiked Chelsea's drink while she was at a nightclub with several friends. Unaware of what happened and feeling ill, Chelsea returned to her apartment alone. She had a rare and ultimately fatal reaction to the sedative in her drink. Sherry and her husband found Chelsea two days later, dead.

Like her daughter, Sherry Wolf stopped living. From the shelves of Henri Bendel to the shoulders of Hollywood starlets, Wolf's handbag collection was growing exponentially, but the designer was too heartbroken to sustain her business. The pain of loss consumed Sherry; the grief paralyzed her. After months on end of days spent in bed, Sherry finally found the strength and resilience to revive her handbag line.

"This is what Chelsea would want me to do, to keep pursuing this passion of mine," Sherry says. And so, after withdrawing from the creative community for two years, Wolf relaunched her eponymous handbag collection with a new sense of purpose: to preserve the memory of Chelsea, once a rising star in her own right.

"Chelsea was gorgeous. She was beautiful yet humble and sweet; she had a smile for everyone, and she could brighten anyone's day. She was a great friend, a great listener. No amount of money and no measure of success could ever replace Chelsea's amazing presence. No amount of money or success can ease the pain."

Sherry Wolf hopes the revival of her handbag line will, however, serve to raise awareness about date-rape drug atrocities and to keep her daughter's spirit alive. In honor of Chelsea, Sherry dedicates one handbag from each collection to her late daughter and donates profits from sales of the bag to Bereaved Parents of the USA, an organization dedicated to helping parents and families living with the loss of a child. In due time, Sherry hopes to establish a foundation in Chelsea's name.

"Chelsea’s good hearted nature and generosity will not be forgotten."

Visit sherrywolf.com to see the designer handbag collection.

Disclosure: I did not receive any products nor was paid for this post. I was provided info from the company or PR firm to share. The expressed opinions are my own and personal thoughts. No other compensation was given.

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