(This GoFundMe was set up by me (Brian Shun), Josh's friend since 1987, to practically funnel help to his best friend for recovery after Hurricane Ian. I live in Franklin, TN, and am setting this account up to funnel donations to him.)
Josh and Mel LaGrew of North Port, FL (with childhood roots in Monticello and Buffalo, MN) experienced the fury of Hurricane Ian firsthand on September 28, 2022. The Category 4 (nearly Category 5 hurricane) descended on them that morning. In the middle of the storm, in the early afternoon, Josh was able to get a short text out to me - a tree had gone through their roof.
The hurricane kept coming. For hours, they found themselves bailing water out of their house and watching the water seep through their ceiling into the other rooms. Josh and Mel continued to ride out the storm, keeping themselves and their dog, Pepper, sheltered while desperately trying to save what else they could from the pouring rain.
As nightfall came and the brunt of the hurricane relented, their home, a welcome place for many, was a waterlogged disaster. They spent the night in place, without power, water, and a compromised roof.
The good news is that they and their family in the area were not injured during the storm, which means the family is intact.
But, in the immediate aftermath, Josh and Mel are now asking themselves - Where are we going to live? What is going to happen to our house? How are we going to pay for it?
This GoFundMe is designed to provide immediate resources for the next 30-60 days as well as help Josh and Mel cover the additional cost of safe, clean, temporary housing over the coming months.
I want to help my friend and his wife find housing and cover expenses in the wake of this life-changing event.
Your Funds in Use
- Temporary Housing Cost - Like many markets, rent has increased dramatically, and the market they live in has been one of those with large increases. Mel has severe respiratory sensitivities to mildew and mold, which is a top consideration in finding safe, clean housing for the family. I am estimating six months of rent plus additional utility costs to live and figure out the long-term situation with their house.
- Missed Work - This covers a couple of weeks of unpaid leave from work for Josh. The LaGrews are a single-income home, and Josh's work is not allowing him to take paid leave to triage his life (that's another topic for another post). That means that if he is dealing with hurricane things, there is no income coming into the home.
- Other Expenses - What does it take to recover from a hurricane? This small addition helps cover the basics of life that we take for granted.
I am starting this GoFundMe at $6,000, to hit the goal needed for the month of October. When we hit that, I will move the goal up to $20,000, to cover the additional cost of having temporary housing for a few months. If we achieve that, I will move it up more to help them replace lost items like couches, beds, etc.
When you break it down, $100 will sponsor the LaGrews for a day of life.
This is part of the way I can directly help one of my dearest friends rebuild after the hurricane.
Will you join me in a practical expression of help and care by giving a gift of any amount to help Josh and Mel?
With Utmost Care and Thanks,