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Finding Light in the Midst of Darkness | Michelle Hord (ep. 446)

Michelle Hord

John O’Leary welcomes hope warrior Michelle Hord to the Live Inspired Podcast to share her journey in finding light in the darkness.

Michelle Hord is no stranger to tragedy. She started her professional career as a producer on America’s Most Wanted, where she came face to face with the unthinkable on a daily basis.

But when her own beloved 7-year-old daughter Gabrielle Eileen was murdered by her ex-husband, Michelle’s entire life crashed down around her.

Today, with compassion + insight, Michelle joins us for a raw and powerful conversation about resilience, hope, and defiant faith and how it can lead to powerful transformation even in the midst of our darkest hours.

You’ll leave this conversation with a compassionate blueprint on how to harness your inner strength and the tools you need to reclaim your story.

Plus, Michelle reads a short excerpt from her book The Other Side of Yet, released earlier this week, that is profoundly special.

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  • Michelle’s father, Noel Edward, became the first Black salesperson in Terre Haute, Indiana in the 1960s and would go on to become president + COO of Nine West, the largest non-athletic show company in the US in the 1990s.
  • By moving frequently as a child, Michelle developed the ability to be agile, read a room and accept change.
  • February 19, 1994: The second greatest shock, Michelle lost her mother unexpectedly.
  • After college, Michelle felt she was doing a public service by helping find missing children at her job on America’s Most Wanted with John Walsh.
  • August 2, 2009: Michelle’s miracle baby girl Gabrielle Eileen is born. Michelle would describe her as “effervescent”.
  • Gabrielle had a security dolly was named Barbara. Michelle bought multiple so she was never without one. Today, Barbara is always with Michelle.
  • June 6, 2017: Gabrielle passed away.
  • Job 13:15: Though he slay me, yet I will trust in him
  • Gabrielle’s Wings is dedicated to giving elementary-aged children of color in vulnerable communities the kind of experiences, access, and programs. Learn more about Gabrielle’s Wings here.
  • Get a copy of Michelle Hord’s book The Other Side of Yet here.

If you found comfort in today’s episode… you’ll enjoy Steve Grant’sepisode, too. After the devastating loss of both of his sons to drug overdose, Steve is providing life-changing support to other families battling the opioid epidemic. Listen to Steve Grant on ep. 120 now.


About our sponsor: Keeley Companies wholeheartedly believes that if you get the people right -the results will follow. They set themselves apart with a forward-thinking culture that empowers their people and fosters loyal partnerships. Keeley Companies are a proud sponsor, partner, and super fan of the Live Inspired Podcast. Learn more about Keeley Companies.



  1. Q. What is the best book you’ve ever read?
    A. Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston.
  2. Q. What is a characteristic or trait that you possessed as a child that you wish you still exhibited today?
    A. I was a dreamer.
  3. Q. Your house is on fire, all living things and people are out. You have the opportunity to run in and grab one item. What would it be?
    A. Gabrielle's doll Barbara.
  4. Q. You are sitting on a bench overlooking a gorgeous beach. You have the opportunity to have a long conversation with anyone living or dead. Who would it be?
    A. My daughter.
  5. Q. What is the best advice you’ve ever received?
    A. Everyone deserves their crazy half-hour.
  6. Q. What advice would you give your 20-year-old self?
    A. Try to live in the moment.
  7. Q. It’s been said that all great people can have their lives summed up in one sentence. How do you want yours to read?
    A. She chooses every day to fight to find joy, love, hope and light in the darkness.