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Help Elder Activist Repair Snow & Tree Damages

$2,349 of $9,000 goal

Raised by 39 people in 3 months
Lois is our mother and she lives in the coastal divide mountains of Oregon where she moved our family by herself when we were children. She built her own home and is a master gardener. She is a bit of a pioneer and a lifelong activist and she is incredibly capable, but she is 74 years old. 

Lois has always been active and integral in her community. She was the mom other children always envied us for having. Lois has always cared for others and made their well-being her sacred trust.  She is currently the longest serving active volunteer for the US Relief Nursery (helping pre-school age children for over 10 years) and continues to be part of the longest held peace protest in the US (since 2001). She has protested nuclear proliferation/testing, fought for civil rights and accessibility, women's rights, been a fierce Queer ally (especially in her own family), taught teen moms parenting skills, and finished her paid career as a counselor for a high risk teen high school...These are just some examples of her good works. She has done more than her share-- though she'd disagree-- and still continues to whenever and wherever possible. Lois is an impeccable role model for world work.

She needs our help this time and we'd like to make it easier on her this once. Lois cannot afford nor physically complete these repairs from Oregon's recent snow storm.

Her small community (Gunter, OR) rec'd 18" of snow over night on Feb 24-25, 2018.  They are normally out of cell phone coverage range, so she relies on a landline telephone. She was able to call out that first morning and let us know what happened throughout the night. After that first call, her phone line has been down and we have been relaying messages through friends/neighbors and family. They all agree she is the worst hit among them. All of them are without power and phone for up to one month.

The initial snow load brought down 3 trees onto her house, including her glassed in sun porch and her bed loft, causing complete destruction of the sun porch and some damage to her roof. When the sun came up she saw a new landscape: trees all around her house. Her propane tank (over 200 gallons) had ruptured due to a tree on top of it and was actively leaking all the gas (30% at time of leak) and threatening her home because her one remaining heat source was the wood fire in the house.  Luckily the gas leak was obvious and she vented the house until the leak subsided. The ensuing snow load brought down the barn roof on top of all her tools (and mine), freezer w/ food, camping supplies, and generator. The propane line was ruptured by another series of tree falls.

Another 1-1.5 feet of snow fell in the next 2-3 days. Many parts of Oregon did not have the resources to help those in remote areas, so neighbors did it for each other. Lois' neighbors were no different and rose to the challenge, clearing 15 miles of the mountain roads of fallen trees and snow (primarily 3 families did this with chainsaws and 4x4 trucks over several days-- THANK YOU WITT-TINNES, CARPENTER, AND HARRIS FAMILIES). They are epic heroes in our books and we are going to do our level best to take care of them as this unfolds and in future; THERE WILL BE PIE. Lois has expressed that she is made joyous by the community support and togetherness. Amazingly, she is taking the damages in stride considering the amount of work and costs in front of us. That is apropos of Lois; she just carries on doing what needs to be done even though she has no idea how it is all going to be resolved...classic working class.

Here's what has happened after the storm:
The aforementioned neighbors brought her firewood and gas, then dug out her generator and helped set it up so she has limited electricity. They also CLEARED THE ROAD ALL THE WAY TO TOWN! They were the first to give us word of her condition and to help all of her neighbors. I'm sure they've done much more, but this was so much more than expected. WE LOVE YOU ALL! Because of their work, Jade (Lois' son, my brother) and Chase (her grandson, child of us all) were able to get to her and assess future repairs (thanks for the pics boys!).

Here's what we need to do:
Remove all trees/debris
Repair house roof and sun porch
Replace collapsed half of barn
Repair propane tank and line

Please show Lois the love and care she needs and deserves as an elder of our community in whatever ways you can.  If you don't have money to give, please go out and give physical support or donate items to help others in need, AND definitely thank the wonderful folks who go out in horrible conditions and repair infrastructure (roads, utilities, etc).  Please pass this on as we have a large goal and hope to spread it out as much as possible. Updates will follow on this page.

Thank you all!
Kristen Reid
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Many thanks for the tireless efforts to get the giant tree off the house. Repairs to the peak and damaged windows are underway. The FEMA area coordinator was very impressed w/ Jade's tree support and ingenuity in managing to get the tree off the house w/out further damage; he said he could not find anyone who had the right equipment for the job. Way to go Jade, Chris P, Chase, Lois, and special guest stars! Chris was a chainsawing fool who never said die (conjuring images of Ash Williams).
We are indebted to everyone who has helped Lois with this maelstrom, especially the first responders (read: neighbors) who helped Lois w/ her initial survival concerns, keeping her warm and fed. She has been surprised by the kindnesses you all have been showing her. This community has really stepped up and supported our family and we feel touched by grace. Thank you all.
Unfortunately, we still need to ask you to keep this project in your thoughts and to please keep this fundraiser going, as we have a long way to go and SHARING this page is the best way to reach our goal. Lois still has work to do on the water and propane systems as well as removal and replacement of the entire sun porch and roof over the barn collapse. There will be opportunities to come out and help, especially w/ the latter...and there will be pie!
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The Tree on the Roof is coming down! A crew of chainsaw wielding saints are getting it done. They have now cut the entire over hanging section back to the roof peak (+5 ft) by cutting sections and zip-lining them away from the house. This was necessary because they sections are easily over 100 lbs, and they could make significant holes when dropped onto the roof. One did hit the edge of the house and gave it a good shake.
The center wall has been knocked out of true by an inch, so the house is still structurally sound. Jade is now building a support (resembling a train trestle) under the tree between the house and the stump so that they can jack the remaining tree up off the roof enough to continue cutting it back in sections until it becomes more manageable.
*Note: a couple of concerned friends wanted to explain that insurance coverage for falling tree damage is nearly impossible when you live in the center of a forest, so insurance coverage was out of reach for Lois and many, many more people living in forests.
As for the barn, the snow-filled tarp has become kiddie pools of roofing/debris supported by all that is crushed below. Tools and camping equipment, bicycles and wood, building materials and freezers all lie under the roof collapse. Salvage operations are under way. Again, I say, Lois will be having a work party soon to sort it out further.
We couldn't get through this without this incredible community; Thank you all! Again, I implore you to please keep finding places that this story has not been shared and post it to spread the word and keep the campaign going.
So much love coming at you! Kristen
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Hello awesome community! Cleanup is progressing, but these trees are BIG and the mess is substantial. Jade sent me a couple pics and Chase reassures me that they will have more for the next update.

The first pic shows removal efforts underway of the front yard trees debris (and broken off stump) while and the second pic shows the tree hanging over the garden. Jade is still sectioning the tree off of the house peak as it is a dangerous task w/out a crane/forklift. The tree over the garden is around 80 feet long, a bit smaller than the ones in the yard and on top of the house, which should make cleanup easier. In case it hasn't been made clear, Jade and Chase have been right beside Lois during this work and continue to be her primary laborers.

The snow is gone, save for the center of the barn collapse which still has remaining snow, so progress is easier. They have been able to cherry pick a few items from the periphery of the collapse, but the snow pile is a hindrance to significant progress. We remain optimistic that most of the tools are still operable.
Lois wanted to send a special shout out to the Oregon Country Fair Elders for passing the hat at their annual retreat as well as spreading the word of her situation and the fundraiser. Many elders donated here as well. Our extended community of Unitarian transplants and Thanksgiving family have also been instrumental in getting Lois the support she needs to do this work.

You are all epic heroes! We continue to be blown away by your compassion and support.

We will have a work party and a grand celebration in the future, so keep checking back for those details as well as for regular updates. Also, please continue to share this fundraiser; there is much work to do and your many hands and good energy make it surmountable.

Much love, Kristen
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$2,349 of $9,000 goal

Raised by 39 people in 3 months
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