We see stories every day about how grief can be transformative, leading folks caught up in the pain of loss down paths of public service. But in the case of Judy Shepard, whose gay son Matthew was murdered in what's been characterized as a hate crime, that cruel twist in outlook has become a positive occupation: As founder and executive director of the Matthew Shepard Foundation, she works tirelessly, speaking around the world to promote human understanding, diversity and gay rights. Now she's written a book, The Meaning of Matthew: My Son's Murder in Laramie, and a World Transformed (Penguin, $25.95), which is first a memoir and by default, perhaps, also a statement of her credo -- yet another way to spread around her peaceable mission.
Shepard will discuss and sign The Meaning of Matthew tonight at 7:30 p.m. at the Tattered Cover LoDo, 1628 16th Street; visit the T.C. website or call 303-436-1070 for details. And she'll make a repeat appearance tomorrow at the same time at the Boulder Book Store, 1107 Pearl Street, Boulder; get info at www.boulderbookstore.com or call 303-447-2074. Go to www.matthewshepard.org to get additional details about Shepard and her cause.
For more ways to rock the night and kill the day, go to westword.com/calendar.