Courtesy Photo / Books by Ace

You may not know her name, but she’s brushed shoulders with Margaret Thatcher, worked on Wall Street, and shattered records raising money for George W. Bush’s first presidential campaign.

There's a better way to prepare  your loved ones for your death. Local author Annie Presley sits down with Steve Kraske to discuss her workbook Read This... When I'm Dead: A Guide to Getting Your Stuff Together for Your Loved Ones.  They also look back on some of her more memorable moments as a political fundraiser. 


You can’t avoid death and taxes, but you can -- and should -- plan for them. The financial planners return on Monday's Up to Date to discuss how you can do that successfully.


Teens process and express grief in very particular ways. In the aftermath of two suicides at an Olathe high school, and while the shooting of Michael Brown is still a recent memory, experts shed light on how people at this sensitive developmental stage cope with profound loss. Plus, information on how adults in their lives can help.


Mortician Encourages Embracing Our Mortality

Nov 4, 2014
W.W. Norton & Co

Death may be inevitable, but that does not lessen our fear of it. Mortician and author, Caitlin Doughty, looks to transform our fears of our own mortality.  On this edition of Up to Date, Doughty talks with  Steve Kraske about what it's like to work with the dead, how our culture has chosen to hide death, and why understanding the funeral business can lead us to embrace our own mortality. 


Mike Sherry / Hale Center for Journalism at KCPT


Olathe Medical Center officials say they have added a building block to their vision of providing cradle-to-grave care.

On Wednesday, in front of a crowd of about 300 donors, employees and other well-wishers, the hospital officially opened a freestanding inpatient hospice on its land at Interstate 35 and 151st Street.

Will Taylor / Flickr, Creative Commons

It's one of life's great inevitables, and we don't mean taxes.

Death Cafes, where people get together to hang out and talk about death and dying, have started popping up in cities worldwide. Locally, we have two Death Cafes: one in St. Joseph, Mo. and another in Kansas City, Mo. 

Eds. note: We are re-airing this story Jan. 2 as we look back on 2014. Jeff Piehler died in November 2014.

Local woodworker and artist Peter Warren met Dr. Jeff Piehler, a retired thoracic surgeon, at an art opening some years ago. But last year, the doctor came to visit Warren at his studio with an unusual request.

“He came to me and said ‘what do you think about building a casket?’” Warren said. "I told him I was fine with that."

Bioethics is a heavy issue to the average person, and most of us prefer not to think about death. But having a plan in place for when the worst happens is crucial.

Shari Hartbauer / Lincoln Journal Star

It’s one thing for a doctor to counsel a seriously-ill patient about how to deal with his illness and how to face the idea of death. But imagine going from being the doctor to being the patient.

A new report shows the number of child fatalities in Kansas in 2011 was the lowest on record. Those records date back to 1992, when the Child Death Review Board was established.

The annual report from the review board says 391 children died in Kansas in 2011. Of those deaths, 230 were due to natural causes. Almost two-thirds involved babies who died in their first month of life, most of those deaths were due to premature birth and congenital conditions.


Planning a funeral can be one of the most personal and vulnerable times for any family, but that doesn’t stop funeral homes from trying to up-sell grieving friends and family on gold rimmed caskets and other additional merchandise.

On Thursday's Up to Date, we talk with Josh Slocum, executive director of Funeral Consumers Alliance, who believes consumers are getting stiffed when it comes to laying themselves or loved ones to rest. We also discuss why green burial is making a comeback.

Does death always have to be a taboo subject?

Rest in Pieces

Mar 12, 2013

When most of us think about death, we assume our bodies will take the traditional routes of being cremated or buried. This is not always the case as author Bess Lovejoy points out in her new book, Rest In Pieces released this month. Rest In Pieces shares the journeys famous corpses took before being laid to rest.

Dealing With The Loss Of A Child

Nov 5, 2012

When a parent outlives their child, the amount of grief, remorse, and guilt can be overwhelming.  These emotions are compounded when dealing with the matters of death that follow.