Remembering Ernie: Funeral&Memorial


I have been asked to provide this update/information by the GoFundMe Management team, as they don’t feel the updates and information I’ve provided prior is sufficient to inform those giving gifts of support. My apologies for any ambiguity.

“Please reply to this email after updating your story to include the following information for your donors:”

1.    Who you are and where you’re from

Angela Loo, from San Francisco, CA, living in Portland, OR.

2.    Your relationship or contact to the parties you're raising funds for

I am the daughter of Ernie Foss, who is the first identified victim of the Camp Fire in Paradise CA. I am his beneficiary/responsible for all expenses related to his death. I have also assumed responsibility for the expenses related to the death of my Stepbrother, Andrew Burt, who was our Father’s caregiver and is also confirmed deceased due to the fire. I’ve included a couple of links, but there are many more stories available, should you choose to search for them.

As a practical man, my Father did make plans with me over the years, to help cover the cost of some of his expenses. These included passing on his few prized possessions to friends and family, then selling the remainder of his memorabilia, to partially cover his final expenses, create a memorial for he and his wife, Linda, who passed away 6 years ago, and to leave something to my younger Brother, who is 20 and trying to secure an education/future. He also wanted to have a big party full of friends and music in Golden Gate Park where he used to “Jam”, and to make a donation to his Lymph Edema support group / organization if possible. Unfortunately, those plans and the means to support them burned in the fire. Everything is gone, burned to ash, along with our history, baby books, photos, etc.

I never imaged I’d be planning for Andrew as well. I only hope his brother James, who has been out of work for nearly a year, is entitled so some sort of death benefit as an IHSS worker on his behalf.

3.    How the funds will be spent (be specific as possible)

Neither my Father, Nor Andrew held any life insurance policies, or renters insurance.  Also, as I am not a “blood-relative”, I wouldn’t be entitled to any death benefit on behalf of Andrew. My father was disabled, and on a fixed income through Social Security. The amount of cash in his bank account at the time of his death was less than $200. This will be given to my younger Brother. As for Andrew, I have no idea and no way of accessing, though I do know they combined funds and lived paycheck to paycheck. As they’d just paid their rent, I can’t imagine there’s much. I often covered several of their regular expenses to make ends meet. I stocked their house each season to help them stretch their budget-dollars.

Thus far, my research into the existing available emergency funds collected (including FEMA)  are intended for residents and survivors of the Camp Fire area – which I agree is appropriate. However, it doesn’t help families in our category much. The American Red Cross may be able to help with some things, like a hotel voucher for when I have to travel down again.

I am not a scammer; I am not an opportunist looking to profit from the death of my family members. I’m simply a person / we are a family who just lost two very important people and a beloved pet suddenly, unexpectedly, to a catastrophic, horrific death and are trying to make sense of things and honor their wishes to the extent possible.  

Many asked me how to help with expenses for our family, hence, my decision to create this GoFundMe account. I have encouraged any person wanting to help the victims and families affected by Camp Fire, but uncomfortable with GoFundMe, to make donations to verified organizations such as the American Red Cross, and to beware of scammers.

The goal I set is not a hard target, but you can’t not have a goal according to the rules of GoFundMe. I chose the figure based on the fact that the average cost of a typical funeral is at least $7k-10K for one person. Not to mention everything we have to do surrounding.  As I mentioned to a reporter from the Mercury News Group just this morning, these processes are far from the ordinary, linear process, due to the nature and scope of the catastrophe. Everything takes longer, is more difficult, needs more documents, and is less streamlined.

Your gift will be used to cover the expenses below, and others that I can’t even know to name at this point.

Cremation and Funeral expenses for my Father, including peripherals (Prayer Cards, Urns, Announcements etc.)

Cremation and Funeral expenses for my Stepbrother, Andrew, including peripherals (Prayer Cards, Urns, Announcements etc.)

Memorials for both

A memorial for Bernice, Dad’s dedicated service dog.

Donations in their name to Lymph Edema Research and support in the name of my Father, and to help animals impacted by the Camp Fire in the name of Andrew and Bernice.

Celebration of Life Gathering 5/4/19 at Golden Gate Park

Legal fees required to assume executorship and control of accounts, purchase permits for memorials, park use, etc.

Travel Expenses to and From California from Oregon. I have already been in California once for over a week and a half; this process will require many trips.

Travel Expenses to and from Georgia for Andrew’s brother if needed for legal purposes, and the memorial service in May.

Offset of lost wages not covered by accrued leave.

Paid help to dig/sift through ashes at the home-site if we are allowed to return to look for anything left.

Ongoing expenses related to recovery and closure of processes / affairs for both my Father and Andrew.

Any other expenses I can’t even begin to imagine / am not aware of yet (It has only been a few weeks.) I don’t know what I don’t know yet.

Anything remaining after everything is settled will be considered a blessing and gift to our family.

4.    Your withdrawal plan to get the funds from the campaign to the ultimate beneficiary/ies

As the eldest and responsible party for both, I and my family are the ultimate beneficiaries. I have not yet withdrawn any funds, but plan to do so in the near future, to reimburse the monies spent to date in the past few weeks and to cover expenses ongoing as they occur.

Finally, I and my family are grateful for the outpouring of care and support. I am grateful to GoFundMe for providing a platform which allows people to send words of encouragement, even if they don’t donate. I will be reaching out to everyone individually, a few each day as I’m able, to thank you personally for your gift, and ask if you’d like a prayer-card or memorial photo sent to you.

Thank you all, God Bless, Angela Loo and Family
Ernie Foss NY Times Article Andrew Confirmation Article 

Friends, Family and all, 

First and foremost, thank you to all of you have shared your stories, love, phone-tree savvy and support. You are amazing and appreciated.

As many of you know by now via his Facebook page and the news, my Papa, Ernest Foss is the first identified victim of "campfire" wildfire. He was found deceased outside his home along with his beloved pup Bernice. My Stepbrother Andrew is still missing, though I know he was with my Dad, trying to get him out of harm's way. We are still hopeful,  and not giving up searching, but the reality is grim. 

I've set up this page to help raise funds for their services/expenses.

Please also consider donating to official, verified, related fundraising efforts such as Red-Cross. 

I also ask that you would visit Dad's facebook page and view my request to share any pictures, videos, stories or KIND words. We've lost so many of our family photos, mementos, and his music recordings,  including those of his rock-n-roll days. I know that there are more recordings out there, maybe even a video or two. I hear there's one of Rainy Daze on a roof in the Sunset District in San Francisco somewhere. SF Native to the core!

There are many articles and stories online right now about my Dad and Andrew,  many of which I haven't seen yet. I spoke to many reporters and emphasized that we are few among the many. There are many families still waiting to hear news of their loved ones. There are many families who have lost everything. Please do what you can to help those in need. 

Blessings to you and yours, 


Dad's Facebook 

News Story and Video

 GoFundMe Giving Guarantee

This fundraiser mentions donating through another platform, but please know that only donations made on GoFundMe are protected by the GoFundMe Giving Guarantee.

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