Community and ServiceLost Art of Relationships

Vickie and Circle The Wagons

By May 10, 2015December 18th, 20195 Comments
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 Vickie's headshot 1


Years ago when I was thinking through A Mother’s Shadow and the direction I wanted to go, I attended a start-up business meeting and met the most remarkable woman that I have never forgot. Her name is Vickie and after you read her story, I don’t think you will forget her either; she is truly extraordinary and an example for all of us to look to. Come see why. 

Vickie was married to her sweetheart Jeff for 23 years and considered herself a ‘normal’ housewife. Circumstances in Vickie’s life changed in an instant. As a result of that situation and the confusion she found herself surrounded in, she began Circle The Wagons.
Here is a brief account of what happened to Jeff, AJ and the subsequent birth of Vickie’s foundation. 
I marvel at what Vickie has been through and the courage and selflessness she demonstrated by undertaking what what must have been a daunting task of starting Circle The Wagons, when more hardships came for her and her family. God polishes us by striking off the dross to reveal the treasured gem; regrettably Vickie was not spared this process. I marvel at her grit, mettle and determination to continue forward in her life.  After enduring such hardships Vickie could choose to become bitter; however, she make the significant choice to become better. This decision which will, without a doubt, positively affect her family now, and for generations to come. What is Circle The Wagons? Not knowing where to turn, or the resources available while in the crisis after her husband and son were shot, she realized the need others also would have in devastating situations. This sparked her desire to found the organization Circle The Wagons. 

  • Purpose:

Circle The Wagons connects innocent victims of violent crime to essential information and resources that will help them in the immediate hours after the crime, as well in the days and months that follow. Our support helps victims, their families and friends with survival and healing, lets them know they do not have to face their situation alone, and helps them find the courage to move forward. Our services include a 96-Hour Survival Guide ™, which is available online and distributed by first responders and community support agencies across the country via our Cans of Comfort™ program. This gives victims a starting point to help them recover from the trauma they have just experienced. We also have a state-by-state resource guide for agencies and organizations that can assist them.

  • Their Story

Circle The Wagons is a Utah-based, 501(c)(3) organization born out of necessity. It was founded by Vickie Walker, whose husband was shot and killed during the “Trolley Square Shooting” in Salt Lake City on February 12, 2007. Her son, A.J., was seriously injured but miraculously survived. The incredible support of family and friends who circled the wagons around Vickie and her family ultimately helped them find the courage to move forward after such a violent event. But while trying to deal with funeral arrangements, medical care for her gravely injured son, insurance questions and unexpected loss of income, Vickie found herself trying to navigate through the victims services system with little guidance and no professional support. Only later did she learn that there are organizations and government agencies that could have offered her assistance–had she only known about them. Vickie’s goal is to provide guidance and support for those facing the same situation in the difficult days following a violent crime. Her hope is that by sharing the knowledge she gained though her own experience, she can help other victims and their families. (Now available in many states, click HERE for the list)

  • What is in the 96-Hour Survival Guide

96-Hour Survival Guide


We plan our days. Our weeks. Our months. But no one plans on being a victim. In the aftermath of a violent crime, it’s often difficult to know what to do or who to contact for support. That’s why Circle The Wagons developed the 96-Hour Survival Guide™. This important guide, as simple as it seems, provides essential first steps for survivors and their families, giving them a starting point after the trauma they just experienced. It also has important contact numbers for agencies that can provide support and assistance. The 96-Hour Survival Guide is delivered by first responders and community support agencies through our Can of Comfort™ program.

  • How Can I Help?
 Our work is possible because of our dedicated volunteers who give of their time, talents and resources. Please join our efforts and get involved!

Contact us to learn how you can help:  By Phone: 1.866.219.6004   By Email:  [email protected]   or   [email protected]

  • Donate –  monetary contributions to purchase the supplies for the Cans of Comfort. See the information HERE
Vickie has worked incredibly hard, sacrificed much and given her all to help any who are suffering at the hands of others. I hope you will go to her website Circle The Wagons look around and possibly you can help by donating your time, resources, or money to make the Cans of Comfort available for those who would not otherwise know where to turn in a time of crisis.
Thank you Vickie for being such a wonderful shadow for us to follow and for sharing your story with us, we are very grateful.
Copyright Carrie Groneman, A Mother’s Shadow, 2015
Recognize a blessing and be a blessing today
For More Posts On This Topic:
A Mother’s Shadow a novel by Carrie Groneman
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  • Tasha says:

    Couldn’t help but tear up listening to her story of tragedy! This has to be every person’s worst nightmare, losing a loved one in that manner. It’s a reminder that there are no guarantees in life. The strength she shows is astounding and admirable. She took her pain and turned it into something good to help others. What a wonderful organization to support!

  • Carrie, this sounds like a truly wonderful organization and seriously amazing that Vicky started this up after dealing with her own tragedy. Thank you so much for sharing more about this here today with us. Also wishing you a great week ahead now!

  • Diane Roark says:

    I love that Circle of Wagons Circles around people that are truly hurting and need the love of God. They need someone to help them walk through such devastation.
    Thanks for introducing me to such a great non profit.
    Diane Roark

  • Vickie is incredible. It amazes me the number of assistance programs that are available, but no one knows about them. They are like carefully guarded little secrets. And Vickie gives those keys of Hope to unlock the secrets. Thank you for spreading the word. ♥
    I really enjoyed your comment, “God pol­ishes us by strik­ing off the dross to reveal the trea­sured gem.” I know it’s true. But I whine some days and say, “God, can I please just stay drossy today?” 🙂 He just laughs at me. Thank goodness He has a huge sense of humor.

  • Wow, Carrie. What a touching story. Vicky is an amazing person — like you said. Thank you for introducing me to this great endeavor. Sharing on FB to help spread the message. 🙂

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