A community raising a family after father dies, leaving 13 children

A community raising a family after father dies, leaving 13 children »Play Video
Family photo. Gennadiy Bogza is in the middle.

SOUTHEAST PORTLAND, Ore. -- Thirteen children woke up one Sunday morning in May to find their father was dead. He'd taken his own life.

Gennadiy Bogza was a man who loved his children, his daughter Natalya told KATU.

"There’s really no words to describe the love he had for us," she said.

His death came as a shock to many who called him a close friend, including his friend and co-worker of 11 years, Mark Shanders.

"Every evening we'd handshake goodbye and say, 'See ya Monday.' There were no signs, just smiles all of the time ... a very good guy."

Shanders and many others in the Southeast Portland and Sellwood communities are rallying around this family to try and fill a father's shoes because 13 children now need financial support.

All the children are younger than 18 years old. They depended on their father as the sole provider. Friends are posting fliers and starting fundraisers online to help get the family enough money to at least afford basic household costs such as water and electricity.

"We miss him a lot," Natalya said. "It feels like a bad dream."

A community is determined to make sure those children are taken care of. You can help by going to the GoFundMe site here to donate.