At 2:00AM on Sunday June 16, 2019 Shari & Kenny Coatney's home
in Thayer, KS was struck by lightning and burned down with only the stone chimney standing. Besides Shari and Kenny, their daughter Kristin and two foster sons, Tyson and Dominic were living with them in the home. Needless to say they feel very blessed that no one was hurt which everyone is thankful for. But losing everything and having to start over is very difficult. Shari and Kenny are truly remarkable people. Shari is the CEO/President of Southeast Kansas Independent Living (SKIL) Resource Center in Parsons, KS. SKIL is a Center for Independent Living assisting people with all types of disabilities to live independently in their own homes. Kenny also works at SKIL building home modifications for customers and anything else SKIL needs him to do. As a manager at SKIL for 15 years, I could not tell all the stories about board members, staff, customers, family, friends, and even strangers that these two amazing people have helped. Shari has devoted her whole life to making sure that other people with disabilities are able to live the way they choose and she does it with a passion like no one else I know. They have brought foster children with significant disabilities into their home for longer than I have known them. Every year they go shopping at Christmas time to make sure SKIL customers, who do not have family, will have at least one present to open. Recently, they both took turns staying with a customer in the hospital for a couple of weeks to make sure he was not alone when he passed. Fifteen years ago Shari was the first to offer me a job when I lost mine due to reorganization at another CIL. Two years ago when my brother Don, who had been retired from SKIL in Parsons and not responding to my families calls, it was Shari and Kenny who went in his home to find he had passed in his sleep. They then went in to empty his home of belongings donated for customers. As I said there are many, many stories as they have always been there for other people.
I ask that you please give what you can to help Shari and Kenny to reestablish a home for their family again. They are currently staying with her elderly parents but they will need to get their own place again soon. They will need everything including food, clothes, medications, furniture, a home, etc. Every donation no matter how small or large will help. Please also keep them in your thoughts and prayers!