Much like anyone else, I never thought that I would be making a gofundme for my family. However, the time has come to ask for help. My heart breaks for my community in my hometown and the other families that also lost their homes to the devastating Rogue Valley Fires here in Oregon. On September 8th, I received news from my mom that she had been evacuated due to the rapidly approaching fire. The stress of trying to figure out what is worth saving when you only have a few minutes (and want to save everything because it’s your home) is immeasurable. When the reality of the race against the flames hit, all my mom could manage to leave with was our pups, Scout and Timber and our pet lizard, Mushu. She drove away with the clothes on her back and our animals, hoping with her whole heart to return home soon. I have seen videos of the fire and could see that where my home once stood was fully engulfed. We lost everything in a matter of moments. The fire burned through our house so hot and so fast that there is nothing but ash in its place - it is completely flattened. My parents lost basic necessities such as clothing, shoes, food, and toiletries but we also lost all of our pictures, family videos, important documents, things from our childhood we were hoping to give to our own babies some day, family heirlooms that were generations old, and items that both my mom and dad had been collecting their whole lives. My dad had an extensive collection of vintage sports memorabilia which had been packed away and was finally about to be displayed since I moved and there was room available. My mom is an artist and unfortunately she also lost all of her supplies, which included hundreds of specially sourced materials, as well as multiple finished/in progress commissions. My parents had recently started to renovate the house to make it how they’d always wanted to have it after my sibling and I moved out to start our adult lives and they had more space to work with. Their vision was just starting to come together and it has all been ripped away. Even without focusing on the items we lost, we lost a home. A place to eat and sleep and feel comfortable. A place full of memories and special moments; my parents got married in our backyard. This home wasn’t only ours - many of our friends and family members had stayed with us when they needed a place to call home too. My mom and dad had worked so hard to have a happy and safe place for us to be, sometimes taking on multiple jobs to ensure we could keep it that way. If you have the ability to donate any funds to help my parents get back on their feet and closer to having a home again, it would be so greatly appreciated. They mean the world to me and I just want to do whatever can be done to help give them even half the stability they provided for us. Please also share this so that more people can see it. Every little bit helps. Thank you for taking the time to read this and for anything you're able to do to boost them up.
- Dawn Shahar
- Ted Demetriades
- Buck & Karen Mueller/Irmscher
- Jennifer Matsuura
Organizer and beneficiary