Spokane community rallies behind family that moved to Colorado, lost everything in Marshall Fire

SUPERIOR, Colo. – A Spokane family moved to Colorado to connect with extended family and start a new life. 

But two months later, the Marshall Fire burned down their home and the memories from Spokane turned to ash. 

They may be miles away, but the Spokane community has shown an outpouring of support. The Kogler family knows some memories cannot be replaced, but they believe others can be rebuilt. 

“There are some things that will always just have to live in our hearts,” Dana Kogler said. 

Like the 15 years they spent in Spokane, watching their kids play baseball, graduate high school and earn awards. 

“We had a few moments where I said to the boys, ‘Okay, get your one or two things that you really want to grab’ and we were out the door within four minutes,” Adam Kogler said.

Dana was at work and could not get ahold of her family.

“The moment that I got to see them and hug them and now that they were safe was the happiest moment of my life, regardless of what had happened,” Dana said.

The family learned their neighborhood burned down in 30 minutes, losing everything they had.

“We had a measuring stick that I got that we’ve been measuring the kids on since they were little and obviously we were hoping they would continue to use.”

Other pieces, just as meaningful, cannot be replaced. 

“We lost a child, Seth, and his memory box and ashes were in the house,” Dana said. 

With that reality, the Koglers are turning to what they can replace, like pictures. 

“The memories are – they’ll always be in our hearts, but I really want some things, which is why we reached out to the Spokane community,” Dana said. 

Dana and Adam’s kids attended Mead and Spokane schools from elementary through high school. Evergreen Elementary has already found some photos they are sending to the Koglers. 

“We reached out for anything from the schools,” Dana said. “Mainly yearbooks because I know that they might have some back copies.” 

She also reached out to Whitworth University, where she used to work. 

“My going away present was windchimes that did Amazing Grace,” Dana said. 

To her surprise, a retired faculty member is replacing them. A friend also made Dana a memory bracelet in honor of her son, Seth. Her friend is going to replace that, too. 

“It’s sentimental, but maybe somebody has a copy of something that they can give us,” she said. 

Even if it’s just looking through your child’s yearbook or going through some old photos from a baseball game, it could make a difference. 

“Spokane is still our home and it will always be our home,” Dana said. 

A home that still holds family memories and a community they need now more than ever. 

“Family is everything, everything,” Dana said. “And as long as we have each other, we’re going to be okay.” 

The Koglers plan to make a memory book of Spokane once they get all the photos together. 

If you have something that might help, email it to danastevenskogler@gmail.com.