Lynn Livingston is experiencing great loss this holiday season.
Days after her beloved dog Jhing-Jhing died, the longtime day-care teacher on Sunday lost her Chanhassen home to a fire. She told KARE 11 that as she was wrapping Christmas presents, she heard a hissing noise followed by a loud explosion that prompted her evacuation.
Her personal belongings except for her cellphone are gone, including keepsakes and many treasured photographs of her mother, who died in August.
But in the wake of back-to-back tragedies, Livingston is finding herself surrounded with support.
In a matter of days, an online fundraiser created by families from the Especially for Children child development organization has garnered more than $16,000.
“Lynn has touched the lives of many young children and their families over the past 30 years. We would like to be able to help her in return at this tragic time of need,” reads a description on the GoFundMe page.
Despite the circumstances, Livingston shared online how grateful she is this holiday season.
“I have much to be thankful for this Christmas,” she wrote. “I have my life and an unbelievable army of people who love and care about me. I am truly in the wilderness right now, but God and my parents are with me. I will come out the other side. My heart is full and I can’t stop crying as I look at the Go Fund Me page. Bless you all. Celebrate, laugh and play today and tomorrow. That’s what life is all about.”
Many who have donated are sharing personal stories about how Livingston cared for their kids in day care. “Such a kind and caring influence on our kids,” wrote Aaron Sande.
“All 3 of our kiddos had Lynn for a teacher and are better for it,” Alison Brohy said.
The cause of the fire remains under investigation.