Fundraiser for the Smith-Kesler Family

In just one short week the lives of Eric, Korinne, and their two boys Samson and Sawyer were tragically changed forever. 

Eric had experienced some chest pain a few weeks ago and was scheduled for a stress test which was to take place on December 13th. On Saturday, November 28th the pain increased to the point where he sought medical attention at the hospital. While in the hospital, awaiting test results, Eric experienced a massive heart attack; unusual for an active, healthy, 48-year-old man. He was transferred to Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester, NY. On Monday, November 30th a seemingly successful quadruple bypass surgery was performed. 

Shortly after Eric regained consciousness from the bypass surgery, further tests, procedures, and complications resulted in Eric going into cardiac arrest where his surgical team performed CPR for an hour. Unfortunately, while the heart was repaired, his brain suffered irreparable damage due to lack of oxygen during the resuscitation efforts. 

Eric's wish was to share the gift of life with others should his own be cut short. On the morning of December 4th at 10:32 AM, the neurologist pronounced that Eric's brain was no longer viable. His wife Korrine, his sister Eva, and his father Steve honored Eric's wishes to donate his organs. 

On Saturday, December 5th, as hospital staff members honored him by lining the corridors, Eric made his final walk to the OR with his wife, Korinne. She played recordings from his live performances (Eric had the most magnificent voice) and said her final goodbye. Eric's gift of life saved three lives and could impact over 50 others.


Eric Kesler was an amazing father, a devoted husband, brother and son, and a gifted musician who shared his talents through opera. He loved his family deeply, and anyone who knew Eric knew that his family was the most important thing in his life. This happy life was cut short far too early. 

He leaves behind Korinne Smith, now a single mother at age 32, and his two wonderful boys Samson age 6 and Sawyer age 3, who absolutely adored their father. As they try to reconcile this horrendous event, Korinne will need much emotional and financial support. 

The medical expenses will be astronomical, and there are many other immediate expenses such as funeral costs.  Now that Korinne is on her own, additional funding is needed for household necessities, child care, mortgage payments, the boy's college fund, and all other daily needs. As a single mother, this is extremely challenging to meet while grieving the tragic and unexpected loss of her husband. 

Your generosity will go far and any amount will be appreciated by Korinne, her boys, and her family.

Eric Kesler sings Puccini
Eric Kesler YouTube Channel
  • Roger Cazden 
    • $20 
    • 4 mos
  • Anonymous 
    • $100 
    • 8 mos
  • Christie Tompkins 
    • $100 
    • 16 mos
  • Amanda Barrett 
    • $50 
    • 17 mos
  • Anonymous 
    • $100 
    • 17 mos
See all

Fundraising team (4)

Morgan Pappas 
Rochester, NY
Korinne Marie Smith 
Colleen Smith 
Team member
Travis Smith 
Team member