To The Laconia Daily Sun,
We humbly write this letter to thank all the wonderful people, agencies and businesses that helped us after losing most of our belongings as well as our dog and cat, Roxy and Selena, due to a senseless and tragic three alarm house fire at 143 Young Road in Gilford, on April 17, 2013.
Immediately during the fire, the Red Cross was there to comfort us. They helped with providing us shelter for two nights at a local hotel and with purchasing some personal items we needed daily.
Not being able to stay in the environment provided, I went to the Marriot in Gilford. The manager there, Doti, not only was able to offer a reduced rate, she was able to organize things so that the Elks Lodge in Gilford donated enough money for an extended stay there. This provided time to try to sort things our and start pieces our lives back together. Without Doti's help working as a liaison when I was unable to pay at times, it would have been impossible to make it this far.
We would like to thank all of our friends at the members of the United Methodist Church in Gilford, as well as the clergy members new and old. Their donations of clothing, money, and shelter when we had no other resource was such a blessing. A special thank you to Paul Weston who unselfishly took the time to contact as many people as he could. He and his family were very generous to us, providing anything we needed. Just being able to call and talk was comforting. I was too embarrassed to ask anyone else for help.
Although we remain homeless, we are optimistic that things will improve. We have witnessed this community time and time again pull together and help victims of all types of tragedies and losses. This has been one long, devastating, unimaginable experience to say the least. It's easy to feel sorry for yourself when you are sleeping in your car. When you have customers that take advantage of your situation sometimes deciding not to pay in full or a few not at all. It's embarrassing when you can't provide for your own family. The bottom line is, like my daughter tells me, "It could be worse dad."
If I could share one important lesson we have learned on this journey, please continue to support others in need. But most important stay on guard as parents, neighbors, teachers and coaches. Any guardian of our children. Tragedy, sickness and evil can strike anyone, anytime and show no discrimination.
We recently realized that as tragic and devastating as our losses are, there are so many more situations that go undetected in our community. As a single parent I know how difficult it can be at times, and how embarrassing it is to ask for help! If you need it please don't wait until its too late.
Let's all try and continue to help each other; let's ask for the ability to start in our own home. Let us not only pray for each other and all of the people who are always there to help. But let us also pray for the people who take advantage at some of these tragedies.
God Bless all who have helped, bless the people who need help. We are grateful for everything we have. We are trying to remain positive as we battle through one obstacle at a time together.
A heartfelt thank you to our friends, neighbors, and our wonderful communities: Gilford, Belmont and Laconia.