Dr. Gregg Korbon on his book, Beyond Reason: Lessons from the Loss of a Gifted Child

The loss of a loved one, especially a child, is one of the most difficult experiences imaginable. In the book Beyond Reason: Lessons from the Loss of a Gifted Child, Dr. Gregg Korbon shares the lessons he learned in the process of coming to terms with the heartbreaking and unexpected death of his nine-year-old son Brian.

A healthy boy, Brian told his parents that he would die before he would reach the “double digits”. Six months later, Brian scored his first run in a Little League game and collapsed. Later, his parents realized that was what he trying to tell them all along. It was as if Brian knew something no one else did and prepared for it by celebrating his birthday, giving gifts to friends and leaving a note to his family that said, “I’m on a trip, don’t worry about me.”

Gregg, a doctor, considered himself a rational man. In an interview with NPR Public Radio, he relates how he couldn’t even conceive of the possibility that his son knew of his own death saying, “…it wasn’t in my belief system that something like that could happen.” This engaging and poignant account delves into the experiences of precognition and premonitions of death experienced by many parents who have lost young children. His feelings of grief and emptiness gave way to wonder and hope as he found healing by sharing Brian’s story with others.

Beyond Reason courageously talks about discovering a world beyond reason–a world that stretches the mind and and explores the interconnectedness of the heart, mind and the spirit. The book looks into the spiritual dimension of life and death and inspires readers to see that no matter how difficult it is, there is indeed wisdom that can be gained from chaos, grief and loss. Written in an intimate narrative style, readers will appreciate the imagery and depth of Gregg’s journey to acceptance. It is a book that will most certainly be a source of inspiration for anyone struggling with the loss of a loved one. While Beyond Reason highlights how brave Brian was in the face of death at such a young age, it also reveals much about Gregg’s inspiring efforts to get past his own grief and help others by sharing Brian’s story. Gregg has since started a website to support the healing process of parents who have gone through the same experience.

About the Book
Beyond Reason: Lessons from the Loss of a Gifted Child by Dr. Gregg Korbon is a book about grief, hope and discovery following the journey of a rational man trying to make sense of his nine-year-old son Brian’s death.  This powerful memoir tackles how Brian’s own precognition of his death led to selfless acts of courage and kindness that inspired his family to find meaning and comfort during their grieving process.

About the Author
Dr. Gregg Korbon is an anesthesiologist teaching at Duke and the University of Virginia medical schools. He has authored books and scientific articles and directs an outpatient surgery center. His latest book is Beyond Reason: Lessons from the Loss of a Gifted Child. He currently lives in the Blue Ridge Mountains with his wife Kathryn and their children. Visit his website http://www.beyondreason.info


  1. Oct 12, 2010
    12:20 pm

    Julie Achterhoff

    I lost my son to suicide eight years ago. I know the loss, pain, and grief it brings. I think it’s great that you are helping others with your writing. There is very little support for parents who have lost children. People and friends are very sympathetic in the beginning, but soon want you to move on with your life, while you keep feeling like it only just happened. There’s a whole lot of processing to go through when something like this happens. Very few people understand, or even WANT to understand this.

    Warm Regards,
    Julie Achterhoff
    Author of Quantum Earth, Deadly Lucidity, and Earthwalker

  2. Oct 12, 2010
    5:45 pm

    Gregg Korbon

    Julie, As I mentioned in “Beyond Reason,” Brian gave my wife and I an opportunity for a pure grief. It was obvious that it was supposed to be — so no anger or guilt were appropriate. I think this was to let me experience and write about the pure process, which I hope can be of help for others going through their own losses. Also, though 8 years seems like a lot of time to heal, it took me 17 years to heal enough to finish the book. And I think Brian still has more for me to learn. Best wishes, Gregg

  3. Oct 12, 2010
    10:32 pm

    Julie Achterhoff

    It sounds like your book will help a lot of people deal with what comes after losing a precious child. I think I would definitely benefit from reading it. You’re right, eight years is nothing. I’m sure I’ll be processing my son’s death for the rest of my life.

    Warm Regards,

  4. Oct 14, 2010
    5:48 am


    Julie, I can’t even imagine.. I’m giving the book to my neighbors who lost their son to choking over 11 years ago. It’s like yesterday. I see them laughing, and having fun, but it’s always with them.

  5. Oct 14, 2010
    5:51 pm

    Dianne Eppler Adams

    Gregg, your book appears to be about death, but in fact it is a celebration of life. The loss of a child is, IMO, the greatest grief to bear, but your courageous search for understanding being shared in the book is a testiment to your abiding love of your son…and all those who must face a similar loss. Bravo!

  6. Oct 15, 2010
    8:16 pm


    Dianne, It’s true that Gregg’s book is about life, not death, and everything about life that we don’t always see.

  7. Oct 18, 2010
    3:06 pm

    Edward Jones

    Thank you for the book, Greg, it opens people to new possibilitys.