Pregnancy and Infant Loss Support, Education & Remembrance

Board of Directors

Meet the Empty Cradle Board of Directors & Leaders

Rachel Redhouse


Rachel first came to Empty Cradle 7 years after her second loss. She and her husband, John, were looking for a place where they could be among people who understood their grief. In 2001, Rachel and John were living in New Mexico when they suffered a miscarriage at 12 weeks. Rachel was not offered any support or resources to help deal with her grief. In 2003, she became pregnant again and welcomed a son, Jonathan Taylor LeRoy Cash Redhouse, 8 weeks early. “JT” passed away when he was 3 days old due to complications from posterior urethral valves. Again, she and John were not offered any support or bereavement resources. In 2010, Rachel and John attended an Empty Cradle support meeting and finally felt supported in their grief. They began volunteering as meeting facilitators and became co-directors in 2015. Rachel and John have four subsequent children.

John Redhouse

Director & Treasurer

John currently serves as co-director and treasurer. After John’s wife’s miscarriage in 2001 and the loss of his infant son, JT, in 2003, he was desperate to find support as a bereaved father. After finding Empty Cradle in 2010, John felt supported, but he still felt there was something missing in his grief journey. With the backing of the Board of Directors, John began a men’s break-out support group during the East County meetings. Even after passing on the meeting facilitation to Alexis and Brian Melrose, Brian has continued to hold the men’s support. John continues to make father’s bereavement support a priority in his work with Empty Cradle.

Suzanne Wells

Assistant Director
Suzanne is the Assistant Director. Previously, she served as Volunteer Coordinator and Meeting Facilitator. Suzanne had 2 miscarriages and also lost her daughter, Serena, in 2007 due to PROM caused by chorioamnionitis. Prior to her losses, she was fortunate to have 2 sons, both of whom are now teenagers.
Suzanne joined Empty Cradle a few weeks after losing her daughter, attending meetings regularly for about a year before becoming a volunteer. She continues to provide phone support to newly bereaved parents as well as volunteering as a loss parent spokesperson, to educate medical providers on how to maximize the level of emotional care for families who are experiencing pregnancy and/or neonatal loss.

Alexis Melrose

Alexis currently serves as secretary and facilitates our East County/Central San Diego meeting. On March 15, 2014 Alexis and her husband Brian lost their second child, Benjamin, when a car accident caused a placental abruption at 27 weeks. They have since gone on to have a subsequent child.

Michelle Herrera

Volunteer Coordinator & SIDS Support Parent
Michelle has been a Girl Scout volunteer for 17 years and held an assortment of positions: Troop Leader, Event Organizer and Community Service Coordinator (her favorite) Michelle also volunteers with Boy Scouts and teaches Religious Education at her church. Michelle has been a SIDS Mom since September 1993 when her second child, Veronica Lynn, passed away. Veronica and her older brother Alex were in the care of her in-home babysitter when Veronica was discovered in her crib. Michelle has learned through years of counseling that the actions and opinions of others aren’t meant to hurt her personally, but their own way of dealing with the tragedy. Michelle has been volunteering in the Pregnancy and Infant Loss Community for 7 years as a State Trained Peer Support Partner for SIDS/SUID/Undetermined Families. She is currently the Volunteer Coordinator for Empty Cradle and President of the San Diego Guild for Infant Survival. Michelle consistently attends the Southern California Regional and CA State Advisory SIDS Council Meetings. Besides her older son Alex, Michelle has 5 other children including a daughter currently serving in the US Army. Michelle encourages all her children to be active citizens in their community and to make the world a better place.

Tami Kindig

Community Outreach
Tami is the Community Outreach volunteer and a phone volunteer. She lost her first daughter, Angela, in 2006 due to a cord accident at 39 weeks. She had 4 miscarriages after Angela, all in the first trimester. In 2012, she was once again pregnant, and lost that baby, named Carter, at 17 weeks, due to another possible cord accident. Tami and her husband found Empty Cradle in 2007, just 3 weeks after losing Angela. She attended almost every meeting for 8 years. She couldn’t imagine going through all of her losses without Empty Cradle and she found the support she needed. She has also made some great friends that have experienced their own losses, and they have gone through their grief journey together.

Amy Donahue

Fundraising Coordinator
After losing her daughter at 10 weeks gestation, Amy found Empty Cradle but felt that her early loss wasn't as validated as others. Sharing these feelings in the group she was met with nothing but love and acceptance. Through the loss Amy became a certified bereavement doula through StillBirthday, and started volunteering with Empty Cradle. Amy is currently the fundraising chair, and nurse liaison for Empty Cradle.

Stephanie Gehrs

Riverside County Lead, Meeting Facilitator

Brian Melrose

Men's Support, Meeting Facilitator

Shannon Casey

Master Librarian, Meeting Facilitator

Jacqueline Azize-Brewer

Meeting Facilitator

Salome Dubenetzky

Mother to Mother Coordinator
As a mother who has experienced a stillbirth, Salome Dubenetzy’s passion to help those coping with loss is immense. She was awarded her Doctorate in Clinical Psychology in 2016, and her interests lie in the area of maternal mental health, particularly perinatal loss. She is a Board Member for Empty Cradle and also the Mother to Mother Coordinator which is an in-hospital based peer support program that provides social support and care to parents coping with miscarriage, stillbirth, and infant death. Her goal is to provide ongoing support to those who have experienced loss so more parents receive access to care and know that there is hope.

Melissa Donlon

Meeting Facilitator
Melissa is a board member as well as the meeting facilitator for our Carlsbad location. She had two first trimester miscarriages between the births of her living children. Melissa was unaware of Empty Cradle at the time of her losses and struggled alone with her grief. She is passionate about helping others who may have experienced a similar situation so they do not feel alone.

Catherine McNulty

Meeting Facilitator
Catherine first came to Empty Cradle to help recover from infant loss. Empty Cradle was a source of support and connection, and helped her realize that infant loss is far more common than most people realize. The loss of her son, Jackson Robert, forever changed the trajectory of her life and sent her looking for meaning and purpose for the life that she was given. She finds meaning and purpose in supporting others as a co-facilitator of monthly support meetings in North County. She founded Grief INSPIRED in 2016, a business that helps grieving individuals find hope in a new future. She currently speaks, writes, and offers grief coaching to those who want to do more than survive grief.

Leilani Brown

Meeting Facilitator

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