Nearly a year ago, Kellen was given an opportunity that would launch him into the adventure of a lifetime. In the fall of 2014, Kellen was gifted a 37' sailboat in desperate need of a little loving and a lot of repairs. His ultimate goal: sail her from Fort Myers, Florida to Saba Rock in the British Virgin Islands, where he would spend one year working as an instructor.
After months of work, investing all he had, and calling in every favor, the boat he would now call home was finally ready for the voyage. With the help of friends and family he packed up all of his possessions and set sail, thirty days later he arrived in the British Virgin Islands. This boat was not only a means of transportation, but a home and livelihood into which Kellen had poured his heart and soul.
On July 2, our hearts hung heavy after receiving a call from Kellen. "It's the worst night of my life,” he told our dad "I'm watching my boat burn". He spent three hours watching his hard work, his heart, and everything he owned lost to the flames until finally, it sank.
The blessing is that Kellen is safe and has a strong system of support as he faces this challenge. The fire destroyed all of the material things Kellen owned, including his clothes, computer, videography gear, kites, boards, dive gear, navigation electronics and ultimately his home. Now he is faced with the cost of rebuilding his life.
We have started this gofundme as a resource to help Kellen reboot his life and continue doing what he loves.
Piper & McKenna
It has been a month since Kellen's tragic loss of his 37' sailboat/home. We as his parents were heartbroken when we received the frantic call from Kellen. As he began to tell us the details of the fire that completely left him without a home and his personal belongings we couldn't help but be so thankful to God for Kellen's safety. He has been putting the pieces back together day by day and each day he is amazed at the generosity of so many who have cared for him in one way or another. His sisters, Piper and Mckenna, rapidly came to aid and set up the gofundme site. A generous friend gave him lodging and so many more shared encouraging words and financial support. It just blew us away. We as a family are humbled and thankful to all. Kellen loves the Islands, water and wind. He is hoping for a new home on the water very soon. Please continue to keep him in your prayers, this is still a big deal to him. We can see God's grace clearly and we are hopeful for Kel's future! With much gratitude, Kellen's Mom & Dad
Did you guys hear the cheers from the Tampa Rocks (Including Antonioni) since "the needle" crossed $10k? But the PUSH continues 'til we meet or exceed the goal. God Bless you all.
Kellen I remember you growing up with Lisa and you're such a fine young man. I cannot wait to help support you rebuild your life. You're not alone, life is going to be better because of this. Father Bratus is up there praying for you. Thank God for family and friends . We love you Kellen and I can't wait to come and visit you down in the Virgin Islands.
Kellen ...... Terri and I continue to "watch the needle" and are so pleased there's so many donors helping out. What's so amazing to me is there are people I know that have never even met you but understand ...... giving now is simply the right thing to do. When the needle passes $10k and hear a HUGE roar from Tampa just know it's us cheering you on.