Feb. 10, 2023 By Michael Dorgan
A family of four from Corona died in the recent earthquake in Turkey and a GoFundMe has been launched to support their relatives, whose homes were destroyed in the disaster.
The GoFundMe page was established three days ago by Edwin Salazar, the father of Kimberly Firik, who perished in the quake along with her husband Burak and their two young sons — aged 1 and 2.
The Firiks were on the top floor of a five-story building when the devastating quake struck, according to reports. The earthquake hit southern and central Turkey as well as western Syria. It was followed by a series of aftershocks, and the most recent reports put the death toll at more than 23,000.
The family had been in Turkey for around a month before perishing in the 7.8 magnitude quake. They had left their home in Corona and went to visit Burak’s family in Elbistan, according to reports.
Salazar wrote on the page that Burak’s mother was also killed in the tragedy.
Salazar, who said he was grief-stricken to hear about their deaths, said he launched the GoFundMe in order to raise much-needed cash for Burak’s surviving family members living in Elbistan.
Burak’s father, along with Burak’s brothers and their children, lost their homes and their entire livelihood, he wrote.
The fundraiser has generated around $20,000 so far with a goal of $100,000.
Any money raised, Salazar said, will go to supporting the family to rebuild their homes. The money will also go toward basic living expenses and education, Salazar wrote.
“I am asking on behalf of my deceased daughter for any help to support her inlaws in Elbistan,” Salazar wrote.
“She was always a kind soul who would put others’ needs above her own, and I know this is what she would want to do.”
Salazar wrote that he still can’t come to terms with the news of his family’s loss.
“I can’t wrap my mind around this tragedy that will forever impact our family,” Salazar wrote.
“I keep imagining that they will be coming back to our home in New York and hearing the sound of their footsteps and laughter at our breakfast table….but I know this will only be in my dreams now.”