Eli's Angels Fund
“…Your father was a very special person. So much of who you are, and so much of how you see the world is because of him. You are his legacy, and through you his memory will live on…”
These words came from a sympathy card I received after the loss of my dad on August 26, 2012. Honestly at the time I was just trying to survive. This was just another set of words on a piece of paper that could in no way shape or form comfort me, although the intent was appreciated. Little did I know how much those words would truly make an impression and impact on me further down this journey. At that point in time my reality was this: I was just shy of my 37th birthday, I had a seven-month-old son who would never know his grandpa. I had just lost my 54-year-old father to a glioblastoma brain tumor. I felt as though I was reliving a bad dream. It had only been three short years since my dad and I had lost my grandfather to pancreatic cancer on June 9, 2009.
From the moment my grandpa and dad were diagnosed I knew losing them was coming. Being a nurse I instantly knew they were diagnosed with two of the most aggressive cancers known to medicine. Of course the daughter and granddaughter in me hoped and prayed with everything I had that maybe, just maybe they would be one of the lucky ones who would beat it, although the odds were not in their favor. Being “Superman” as their oncologist always called them, was not their destiny. My grandpa lived only three short months after his diagnosis and my dad fought with everything he had for almost 21 months, but in the end he too lost the battle.
In what seemed like an instant two of the most important men in my life were gone and for the first time in my life I felt lost. Now what? Who would I go to with the questions I was sure to have about raising Eli and life in general? Where would I go to for that soothing voice on the phone calling “just because”? Who would take their place in telling me things would always be ok if I was questioning myself or my decisions…and I would actually believe it? I had and still have more questions than answers. However, as time passes I am realizing that some of life’s questions are never answered and some of life’s answers you don’t question - it is what it was always supposed to be whether you are expecting it or not.
One of these unexpected answers that led to my partnership with Partners In Housing came in the form of several old quilts…yes quilts, and a Facebook post. After the year anniversary of my dad’s passing, it was time to clear out the storage unit that had stored my grandpa’s and dad’s belongings. While going through tubs and tubs of their possessions I found several of my great-grandmothers hand stitched quilts. I looked through and kept many for myself and Eli, however there were still several left. I had no idea what to do with the extras. What I knew for sure was that I did not want them sold and I did want them to go to people who could really appreciate and use them to stay warm. This would be something that my grandpa and dad would have definitely approved of - helping others.
My post was simple, “I have some old, heavy and warm quilts that I am wanting to donate, but I am not sure where…suggestions please.” A few friends gave me ideas and then one caught my eye. It was from a high school classmate, Heather. She posted my company Partners In Housing (PIH) would love theI had remembered seeing something Heather had posted a few weeks earlier about a veteran PIH had helped and his story. I had read it because I am an Army wife and sister and helping veterans is important to my family. I contacted her for more information and decided this was where the quilts were going. After delivering the quilts Heather and I decided to get lunch and catch up. I was very interested in learning more about PIH.
On the way home I started thinking about some of the projects Heather said they had implemented and ones that could always use donations like the food pantry and resident store and how I could help. My initial idea was with the holidays approaching I would ask my close friends and family for a small amount of money so I could go to the commissary and use coupons to get as much food and personal items as I could to donate to PIH. As I glanced in my rear-view mirror to check on a now sleeping Eli, I realized something that I had known all along, but at that point it really hit me: Eli was never going to know my dad and grandpa the way I knew them. It was going to be my responsibility to teach Eli about two of the most important men in his mommy’s life, sharing my memories and what was important to them so he could pass it along to his children. I had to continue the legacy, but how?
The holidays were coming up and they were always an important time to my grandpa. Anyone was invited and no one ever went away hungry. I had the idea to step outside of my family and close circle of friends to anyone and everyone I knew to see if they would help me fill Thanksgiving baskets for some of the PIH residents that maybe couldn’t afford them; surely someone at PIH could help me accomplish this. I thought we could make it a yearly event to give so many baskets to families at Thanksgiving and Christmas time. As time went on I could start to teach Eli about helping others regardless of their circumstances, while at the same time telling him about both his grandpa and his great-grandpa, and the values our family instilled in me about giving without the expectation of anything in return.
Long story short, in October 2013, I met with Chris, the Director of Advancement at PIH to see if they could use my help and the help of others I had relationships with throughout the community. They were more than gracious, while at the same time trying to help me fulfill my vision of something sustainable to pass along to Eli when he became an adult. The result…Eli’s Angels: A Private Endowment Fund in Memory of William “Bill” and Tony Moore…let the Journey begin…
If you would like to make a donation by check, please make the check out to Partners In Housing and indicate in the Memo line that the donation is for the Eli's Angels Fund.
You can mail it to:
Eli's Angels Fund
Partners In Housing
2811 E. 10th Street, Suite F
Indianapolis, IN 46201
If you would like to make a donation by phone using Visa, MasterCard or American Express (we do not accept Discover by phone), please call Jennifer Coffey at 317-633-1861, x113.
Partners In Housing is a recognized 501(c)(3) tax-exempt charitable organization. All donations to the Fund are tax deductible to the fullest extent allowed by the IRS.