Wednesday, February 19, 2014

An Ekena Thank You (Guest Post)

Just over three months ago my sister and her family lost nearly everything - their home, their cars, and almost all of their belongings - when a tornado ripped through their town of Washington, Illinois. I used Chasing Roots to share information about the disaster and Sara's family's well-being, as well as to launch a number of financial and in-kind relief and recovery efforts. The tremendous outpouring of support from across the globe overwhelmed me, and buoyed Sara and Jeff when they were otherwise sinking.

Today's post is a message from Sara to all of you who read about their struggle and then called, emailed, prayed, donated, and/or spread the word.

Throughout the last few months our family received hundreds of generous donations. We worked diligently to document each financial and in-kind contribution, and have done our best to thank everyone who contributed in one way or another.

Along the way, however, many donations arrived on our doorstep without cards or were given anonymously…which made sending thank you notes a bit challenging. So today, we'd like to extend our deepest and most sincere thanks to everyone - especially those of you who we have been unable to reach thus far - who stood by us during our darkest hour. Although our lives were turned upside-down, we survived because your love and support lifted us up. Thank you for your care, your concern, and your generosity. We are blessed.

On a different but related note, I thought you might like an update on our family.

On the home front, we have been working with our insurance company and are finally close to agreeing on a "number". We met with a structural engineer and our builder, and are ready to move forward on our new house using the same footprint but a slightly adjusted interior layout. If all goes according to plan, we will break ground in March and (fingers crossed) finish building in September.

The most tedious and stressful part of all this, at least right now, is itemizing every single lost possession. The process makes me ache, but we are making progress.

As far as the four of us are concerned, we have settled into our new home. We absolutely adore and love living with the family who opened their doors to us. Carter and Lily have adjusted quite well, all things considered; they love having "playmates" right upstairs and are making progress with their creative sleeping arrangements.

Thank you again for your support as we rebuild our home and our lives,

Sara, Jeff, Lily, and Carter Ekena
Found in the rubble.

Read Sara and Jeff's story by clicking on the links below.


Ekena Family Updates
The Third Day
The Most Thankful of Thursdays
As the Week Comes to a Close…
The Odds are in Johnny Football's Favor
Find the Silver Lining
What are the Odds?!
One Step Closer
One Last Thanksgiving Request
Washington Strong
Washington Strong(er)
Wake Up Wisconsin

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