Erin’s House founders organize fundraiser while preserving the memory of their daughter

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (FORT WAYNE’S NBC) – The community gathered downtown on Friday night to raise money for Erin’s House for Grieving Children.

The community has been very important to the “Wine for the Spirit“dinner and auction, which is the organization’s biggest fundraiser of the year.

“A third of our budget is up to tonight, so we’re really relying on our generous community coming here tonight,” said Audrey Gilbert, director of development for Erin’s house.

Erin’s House provides support to children who are experiencing the loss of a loved one.

Linda Jackson, NBC presenter in Fort Wayne, hosted the event for an organization close to her heart.

“Young people deserve the love, the programs and the volunteers at a time when they are so needed,” Jackson said.

The organization started in 1993, just four years after Erin Farragh’s death, just before he turned six.

Erin’s sudden passing has left her parents, Gail and Dave Farragh, looking for support for Erin’s younger siblings.

“When our daughter passed away, we were immediately like ‘Oh my god, now what are we doing?’” Said Gail Farragh. “Erin’s House was born out of a need for children to be in a safe space.”

The Farraghs understand that everyone grieve differently. For them, the past year and a half has emphasized the importance of being there for others.

“Everyone is ready to live now and everyone wants to get back to a new normal,” said Dave Farragh. “We are going to move forward and get past COVID and everyone is here to support the community.”

Either way, the Farraghs hope their daughter will never be forgotten.

“Her memory will live on for all of us,” said Gail Farragh. “I can’t even talk about how I’m feeling right now, it’s close to my heart.”

Donors provided several auction items, including a retreat on Lake Michigan, a stay in Fort Wayne, and a kick out with football star DaMarcus Beasley.

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