‘Every night we prayed, please let her see the house’: organization answers prayers for tornado family


EUREKA, Kan. (KSNW) – After the July 2016 tornado ravaged the town of Eureka, many disaster-relief services came and went. It’s part of the rebuild cycle. One organization however, is still there and helping a Eureka family rebuild their dreams.

Mennonite Disaster Services is rebuilding a house, nearing completion, for Elmer and Regina Hatcher.

Shortly after the tornado, Regina was diagnosed with stage three colon cancer.

“So every night we prayed, let her live long enough to see the house,” a tearful Elmer told KSN.

Their prayers, answered. Regina’s cancer was not visible at her last appointment. She even picked out the shade of blue the house was painted on Thursday. The Hatchers are staying in an apartment space while their home comes to fruition.

Jeff Koller, regional operations coordinator for Mennonite Disaster Services likens the work his organization does to the story of the Good Samaritan.

“It’s turned into kind of a neat project because it was started, the walls and floor were all framed in a parking lot at First Mennonite Church in Newton, Kansas in a weekend blitz,” Koller said.

The Hatchers are preparing to move into their new home next month. THursday afternoon, volunteers from Germany helping MDS and also inmates from Greenwood County Jail were helping build the home. Elmer was able to use his German he remembers from his Army days when he was stationed in Germany to speak to the volunteers.

“Everywhere I turn, God’s been there to help us,” Elmer said.

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