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Oso fund exceeds $30K

Lakeridge Principal Andy LaBadie (front, left) and 5th grade student Grace Wilson (center), present Barb Hovsepian (front, right) with a donation of $500. - Contributed photo
Lakeridge Principal Andy LaBadie (front, left) and 5th grade student Grace Wilson (center), present Barb Hovsepian (front, right) with a donation of $500.
— image credit: Contributed photo

Mercer Island Cares Oso Much started as efforts to raise $15,000 for victims and their families of last month’s devastating landslide. This weekend it met, then exceeded, its $30,000 goal.

Efforts formally wrap today, April 30. As of Saturday, the fundraiser’s founder and lead coordinate, Barb Hovsepian, reported $30,170 raised.

In a Facebook update from the weekend, she recounts a visit from a friend to Au Courant Salon, where Hovsepian works.

“We are now only $260 away from $30,000, can you believe it?” she told her friend, Judy Bloom, who promptly made a cash donation.

Two weeks ago, Hovsepian had the chance to  visit Arlington near the site of the landslide. Several visitors had been treating Oso as a tourist site, and so authorities closed off access to avoid contamination and unwanted attention. Still, she had the opportunity to meet the women behind the Cascade Valley Foundation Relief Fund and many more devoted and inspiring residents. The stories of generosity are too many to count.

“So  much sorrow, yet love, sadness [and] appreciation for all the support,” recounted Hovsepian in an email about her visit. “It was rewarding and emotional at the same time. It is surreal.”

Hovsepian even reported donations from Islanders who have since moved away, to Colorado and California.

 

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