Lani Leary

Dr. Lani Leary has over twenty-five years of experience as a psychotherapist working with chronically ill, dying, and bereaved clients. She served as the director of mental health services at Whitman Walker AIDS clinic, as a professor of Death Studies at George Mason University, and as a researcher at the National Cancer Institute of NIH. Leary also garners wisdom from her personal experience—her mother’s death when she was a child, her father’s death from cancer, her own profound near-death experience—and has sat with over 500 people as they died.

Dr. Leary has spoken nationally at over 250 conferences, writes a bereavement column for, and is the author of Healing Hands an international, bestselling audiotape on therapeutic touch and pain management.

Books by this Author

No One Has to Die Alone

My Life in 8 Words

Author Revealed

Q. What is your motto or maxim?

A. To love and be of service to just one person is to love and serve the world.

Q. Do you have one sentence of advice for new writers?

A. Perseverence is more valuable than creativity.

Q. What are your 5 favorite books of all time?

A. Expecting Adam, by Martha Beck
The Sound and the Fury, William Faulkner

Illusions, by Richard Bach

Talk Before Sleep, by Elizabeth Berg

Prince of Tides, Pay Conroy

Q. Is there a book you love to reread?

A. Illusions by Richard Bach

Q. Who are your favorite authors?

A. Pat Conroy
William Faulkner

Elizabeth Berg

Author Voices

March 12, 2012

It was a great honor to share my perspective that "No One Has To Die Alone" at the recent TEDx Honolulu event. To view, go to
Feedback from viewers relayed that they had a new "tool belt" of ways they could now respond to the needs of their dying loved ones. We can increase our competency and confidence by learning new skills, practicing compassion and presence, and accepting the great opportunity of service. You CAN make a difference!