House Fire: Help Change Friends
Lives - Community Pull Together
Tom, Judith, and JT Erickson

- Judy Gabriel, Ojai

Dear friends,
Thank you for taking time to read this and help a neighbor and wonderful Ojai family.
Tom, Judith and JT (Erickson/Brosius family) along with Corie and Ben were all caught in a fire last night (Sept 24) at 3 am in their home. Luckily everyone is safe and unharmed. They have lost one cat and one is still missing. Their puppy is black with soot, but ok. Most of the house and content was burnt, a car and a van too.
Your support can be offered in many ways. Please read below.

Some immediate needs:
Because Judith and Tom literally only have what they were wearing, they need clothes, food and gas money. Gift cards from Vons, Trader Joes, restaurants, gas stations and cash are most helpful. Specific clothes sizes are below. An account is being set up at the Ojai Community Bank. Please drop by and make a donation.
It was like pulling teeth to get this list of items that were lost in the fire. They do not want to impose on anyone, but as a community we know all these items are in surplus somewhere around and they can be put to stellar use here to help them rebuild their lives.
Thank you so much everyone for pitching in.
Please send all emails with responses to or
We will pass the messages on. Items can be dropped off at either of these generous stores:
Made in Ojai ~ 323 East Matilija - (805) 646-2400 ~ 11-6 weekdays, 11-5 Sat, 10-4 Sunday
Vickie's Thrift Store ~ 922 East Ojai Avenue ~ right next to Georgios on Ojai Avenue.
Thank you Vickie and Roberta !

  • Clothes:
    - 5' 1" tall
    Pants - medium drawstring, dark colors
    Tops, medium to large, loose fit
    Shoes -soft/cushy thong sandals (flip/flops) size 6 1/2 - Judith has a very wide foot with some nerve complications so she is in pain and these soft open sandals are best
    Tom -
    Pants - size 32/30
    Shirts - t-shirts medium, button down/short sleeved - small
    Shoes -
    JT - age 18
    Pants - size 28, trim legs, dark colors
    Shirts - t-shirts large
    Shoes - size 8 - skate style shoes

    Other Needs:
    1) Help with laundry- all the things that made it, need to be washed. (Some sheets, blankets, JT's t-shirts). If someone could take these things home and wash them and bring them back, that would be great. They will also need for the Laundromat:
    a. Laundry detergent
    b. Fabric softener
    c. Eventually, a
    washer and dryer
    2) Towels, beach and bath towels for all three.
    3) Someone to spend some time on the internet and find the name of the cleanser and "magic" sponge that takes soot off of things.
    4) Several folks to help Judith sorting through piles Friday and the weekend at the house and rescuing items. Bring some of the following:
    a. Boxes and bins to store stuff in (lots of these so they can sort)
    b. Rubber gloves or work gloves
    c. Cleaning rags
    d. Cleaning detergents
    e. Hose
    f. buckets
    5) Someone to wash all the kitchen stuff and pack it up
    a. Most of the kitchen stuff is ok, just covered with soot, so hauling it away, washing it and packing it in bins with labels until they have a new abode.
    6) Storage space- need a couple places to store what they can store the salvaged items until they find a place
    7) Carpentry tools for Tom
    He builds chicken coops. Call Rocky Kemp 660-6569 or Tom Hardy 223-5517 to coordinate tool donations.
    8) Skateboard with trucks and wheels- (7.75 deck, size 52 or 53 wheels, trucks to fit board, grip tape, bearings) approx. cost $150. Donated parts or a gift certificate for a skate shop.
    9) Musical instruments for JT's band
    a. Drum set
    b. Amps (bass and two guitar amps)
    c. Bass guitar
    d. Electric guitars (2)
    e. Acoustic guitar (Tom's)- standard size
    10) 5 bikes - Ben's, Corie's, JT, Tom's and Judith's were all burnt
    11) Laptop
    12) Color printer/scanner
    13) Printer and office supplies, ink, paper, etc
    14) Mouse/keyboard for desk top
    15) Desktop computer
    16) Twin or double bed
    17) Full size bed
    18) Massage table
    - Corie is a masseuse and it was in the garage and is no longer
    19) CD player
    20) TV, DVD player
    21) Digital camera
    22) Video camera

    23) Restaurant gift certificates - They love Reuben's, Boccolis, Jim & Robs, Carrows is handy, breakfast works well at Cafe Emporium and Eggs n' Things. They admit to loving Taco Bell too.
    Offerings so far:
    1) Vicki's Thrift - donation drop off spot, meeting Thurs night at 7pm - 646-1769
    2) Temporary housing - Gabriel Family- Gridley Road- 798-4111
    3) Storage - Skye Khabir 798-2462 - 723 Fernando-
    4) Doggy sitting - Dulanie Ellis and Doug LeBarr
    5) Help of Ojai after Red Cross steps out
    6) Made in Ojai - dropping point for donations ($ , clothes and food)
    7) Pepper Tree Retreat - extra food from this weekend's retreat (Judy will deliver)
    Thank you everyone ! We hope none of you will ever have to experience this tragedy.
    Some friends

    On behalf of the Erickson/Brosius family

    Judy Gabriel

    Read J.T.'s X-Games "On the Spot" Interview in the August, Issue 17 Online, (page 15) - - Editor