RIVER FALLS — A GoFundMe campaign to help the Gaustad family surpassed $25,000 in the two weeks following a fatal house explosion.
Martha Gaustad, 75, died after being transported to the hospital and her daughter, Kari Gaustad, sustained undisclosed injuries in the blast that leveled their River Hills Road home on Feb. 1, according to authorities.
- GoFundMe: House Explosion Leaves Family in Desperate Need (link is external)
Marlayna Diel, the campaign’s organizer and neighbor to the Gaustads, said she was overwhelmed by the outpouring of support, and “incredibly thankful for everything that everyone has done to help, whether that was through donating, spreading the word or helping them on the night of the explosion.”
The funds will be used to help Kari Gaustad and her son pay for funeral and medical expenses as well as basic necessities, according to the GoFundMe campaign website.
There was $25,725 raised by 363 donors as of Wednesday afternoon.
The cause of the explosion was under investigation. River Falls police had no updates to share as of Feb. 17, a city spokeswoman told the Star-Observer.