Brian Ehrhart Memorial Fund & Cleaning the Hanta'd House

For: Sandra Ehrhart
Organizer: Wes Ehrhart
Brian Ehrhart Memorial Fund & Cleaning the Hanta'd House (Sandra Ehrhart)
of $15,000 goal
100% Complete
Raised by 442 donors

The Story

Brian Ehrhart, Jesus follower, husband to Sandra for over eleven years, and dad to six year old Eli, and four year old Emma, died suddenly on Friday, February 24, 2017 at the young age of 34. What is more, a week later, we found out he died from hantavirus pulmonary syndrome, a rare virus transmitted by rodents. Due to the lethal nature of the virus, Sandra and her two little ones are now out of their house and working with various agencies to do all they can to prepare for getting back home. 

God is going to work amazing things for His glory in this, yet tragic seems to be an understatement. Miriam-Webster said the "word of the year" in '16 was "surreal"; that is certainly the word in these moments.

Many people want to do something to help, but we reside in the tension of wanting bless Sandra and the kids, but not wanting to impose. One idea is to pick a day 4-6, or 18 months from now and put a note or yearly reminder in your calendar to bring them dinner or a special treat.

Obviously, money is needed at a time like this, so we are thankful for this platform which allows you to donate directly to Sandra for funeral and other costs in this season.

The most any of us can do is pray. We thank you for those prayers as we trust the the God in whose presence Brian now resides.

Fundraiser Updates

Posted on June 5, 2017


Posted on June 5, 2017

An Update, Brian's 35th, and a new way to help!

Here we are 101 days since losing Brian and the day before his 35th birthday. Sandra and the kids are still in a hotel. The insurance company, cleaners, and other agencies have [finally] decided to rid most everything in the house. This means Sandra will need to re-purchase just about everything she and Brian once owned. Insurance has been helpful and will pay some of it, but how much she will receive in return for the items will be undetermined until they get back home. Part of what she has to pay out of insurance money includes cleaning of any items she wants to save, as well as the storing of those keepsakes. Cleaning still has not begun, but should this week--we are hopeful.

Here's where you can help! Why not even call it buying Brian a 35th Birthday gift? Sandra has begun an Amazon wish-list of everything she needs to re-purchase. It is called simply, "Making the Ehrhart House a Home." By visiting that site, you can purchase items directly for her and the kids. The first goal is to make the kids' rooms really special. (If anyone has any contacts with Disney for princess stuff or Lego for Lego stuff, please let me know - I'd love to somehow get them tickets to Disney/Lego-land for when they move back home.) Bigger-ticket items will be posted as they are determined (e.g. electronics, flooring, painting, kitchen appliances, mattresses, etc.) - if you are wanting to help with these, please contact me directly. You may also give through this YouCaring site.

Lastly, we are looking for new items and specific ones. Yard sale items or stuff you have around that you can give are great, but we'd like to stick with this list specifically. Thanks for your consideration.

As far as where to ship these items, it can't be to Sandra's home because no one lives there! When you select where to send these gift items, Amazon will give you a choice: Sandra Ehrhart c/o Trisha Ericson's Gift Registry Address. Please send it there.

For Brian's 35th birthday, there is a video I (Wes) posted as a gift to Brian for his would-be-35th birthday on June 6. You are welcome to enjoy it. It's just a memento to him (and was therapeutic for me).

Thank you once again!

Posted on April 28, 2017


Posted on April 28, 2017

Imagine someone holding a tablet, walking through your house and looking at all your items as you discern what you will keep and what you plan to never see again. Do you pay to clean it? Do you replace it? And what about the items that are irreplaceable? Do you keep them and try to have them cleaned or will a picture suffice?

That has been the last three days for Sandra. While some of the protocol of how best to deal with certain items is still undetermined, that is the thought process with which she has had to view her home on the small screen.

Some of the quotes heard cause your stomach to drop:
  • [in the bedroom] "Oh, that's the carry-on he packed for Mexico ..."
  • [in the office] "Oh, those are the notecards that gave him the idea as to how he would propose to marry me."
  • "That's the Father's Day card the kids made for him. [They] worked on it three times to make sure it was perfect."
  • [in the garage] "That's a box of old plaques, awards, and trophies he accumulated during his athletic career."
  • "That's a VHS of him playing soccer at about the same age Eli is now."
The picture associated with this post is the card Sandra wrote him for Valentine's Day just ten days before he passed away. He had it kept in a box just next to his desk in their office.

As if dealing with the tragic loss of your spouse wasn't difficult enough already, I've [Wes] asked myself repeatedly in the last two days, "What is going on? This whole thing is so ridiculous? How did this happen? This doesn't happen. This is horrible and horribly painful." How Sandra does it is besides me. I have no clue.

So why post this? It's an update. It's the reality of what is. It's progress! But painful. It's hope to see the end of this phase and get back in the house! Yet hampered by the reality of what more grief is to come.

Thank you for the prayers. Thank you for the gifts. Keep them coming. It still feels like it's only just beginning.

Posted on April 8, 2017


Posted on April 8, 2017

The work on the house has begun. Hallelujah!

Today the exterminator went in to set traps and seal holes around the house. There were signs of fresh droppings, so hopefully the home will be rid of the cause of Brian's death soon. Following that, the full cleaning will be done on the home. We still don't know all that will be considered a total loss, but unfortunately we did find out earlier this week that both cars have been deemed a total loss.

Shopping for cars was something Brian excelled at and even found to be somewhat fun. Sandra does not (nor does Brian's brother). We've narrowed down the specifications we are looking for, but for some reason car shopping feels like finding a needle in a haystack. We have one promising lead that will be seen tomorrow afternoon, so please pray it is as good as it seems right now. If you have any car connections in the Seattle area, please let us know (or if you want to spring for a brand new car for Sandra!). We know what we want, it's just hard to find.

The big question I think many are asking is, "How are you doing?" It's really hard to say. The hanta-curveball that has caused living in a hotel, renting a car, and creating a new normal not at "home" is hard to even begin grieving, really. Strength has been prayed for, but even with that we are trying to gauge when to be strong or vulnerable with the kiddos. They are doing ok, but again it is hard to know what to expect. They are still quite uninformed of everything, so if you happen to see them, please do not ask anything about details that have been shared on this site or elsewhere.

Finally, there have been numerous reports through various media: social and news alike. Please be careful believing what you read or hear. Unfortunately some things have been posted or reported that just aren't true. We remain grateful that many lives may be spared of this terrible virus because of Brian's death, and we are committed to remaining anonymous as much as possible. Please take what you read/hear with a grain of salt. Everything we post on this site will remain reliable information.

Some thoughts from Brian's brother can be seen on his site if you are interested in reading more about processing the situation. Thanks again.

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