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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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June 16, 2024

The story of a fire, a family and the Aggies who lent a hand

Mark+and+Kirsten+Hall+celebrate+the+birth+of+their+daughter%2C+Naomi.

Mark and Kirsten Hall celebrate the birth of their daughter, Naomi.

A fire took one family’s home hours before they welcomed a baby girl into the world. The Aggie family responded.
A&M graduate Mark Hall and his wife Kirsten were faced with rebuilding their lives after their home burned down on Aug. 17.
Kirsten’s sister, Jessica Allen, immediately started a “GoFundMe” campaign. Allen thought they would be able to raise a few thousand dollars, but she set the bar high anyway.
$29,000 later, Allen was blown away.
“I have never seen so many people in a community coming together to essentially help out a family that is complete strangers to them,” Allen said.
In addition to donations from Kirsten’s hometown of Phoenix, Ariz., as well as Mark’s friends and family, the response outside of Aggieland has been just as great, Kirsten said.
There have even been donations from outside of the country.
“I actually had a lady from United Kingdom email me because she saw Kirsten and Mark’s story and she wanted to ship them a package — like, across the world,” Allen said. “That is so amazing to me. It’s so humbling that people everywhere want to do what they can to help out my sister and her family.”
Along with monetary donations, Mark and Kirsten have received clothing, toys and other items.
The Hall family is staying in temporary housing and recently signed a lease to move back to Bryan.
Mark graduated from A&M in May and is studying for his GMAT with hopes of going to graduate school at A&M or somewhere close to his family, Kirsten said.
The cause of the fire is still unknown. Only a handful of items were saved, including a computer with family photos.
Kirsten said she,is glad her baby, Naomi, joined the family when she did.
“Even though it was such a crazy time and still is, she made a horrible situation bearable for me,” Kirsten said.
Allen said the situation highlights the importance of family.
“You know, we in the world sometimes forget what truly matters, we get so caught up in our selfish agendas and materialistic things, we forget,” Allen said. “It’s times like these that remind you how blessed we are to have family and friends and for amazing people who serve those in need.”
To donate, visit the Hall Family Foundation’s page on www.gofundme.com.

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