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  • Writer's pictureScarlett Callahan

A Home Called Brent's Place | Author's Q & A

Updated: Mar 19


In 1998, Donn and Linda Eley opened the first Brent’s Place facility, featuring five fully furnished apartments that provided Safe-Clean accommodations designed for patients following bone marrow transplants. Now, 26 years later, Brent’s Place serves nearly 400 families facing a life-threatening illness each year, providing housing, food security, and comprehensive support programs. 


Donn shares his family’s inspiring story, shaped by love, courage, and unity, in his memoir “A Home Called Brent’s Place.” In its pages, Donn describes the community on whose shoulders a mission was built and how his son’s courage continues to spark hope for the families who call Brent’s Place home.  


 

To celebrate the launch of “A Home Called Brent’s Place,” we asked Donn a few questions about his memoir: 


Q: What inspired you to write this memoir?


A: “After Brent’s death in 1988, Linda, DeAnn, and I committed to do something to honor his spirit and courage. We started by raising $5,000 for the American Cancer Society. We created the Brent Eley Foundation (BEF) in 1997 and opened the first Brent’s Place in 1998.  In 2020, Brent’s Place served over 300 families, and BEF net assets exceeded $18 million. The history of this incredible success story needed to be told and I was the only one who could do it. The Brent’s Place story needed to be told for all those who have made it possible: volunteers, donors, staff, our hospital partners, the families we serve, and the future.” 


Q: How did you decide what to include and leave out of your memoir?


A: “I included the people and events that made Brent’s Place possible. My family, the family that Linda and I created, Brent’s story, the Village Homes family who made our Kid’s Cure fundraiser grow, the Brent’s Place family of volunteers who gave their time, treasure, and talent to create the first Brent’s Place and who continue to support our mission. Our Board of Directors and staff who are responsible for daily operations and the future. My focus was on the most significant events and people who have made Brent’s Place possible.”


Q: What was the most challenging part of crafting your first book?


A: “Making the commitment to start was the most difficult. Once I started, I had to finish.  Remembering how it all went brought tears to my eyes. Support from family, friends, business associates, and volunteers brought joy and a better understanding for how God works.”


Q: What was the most fulfilling part of writing this book?


A: “Brent’s story will never be forgotten because of how his spirit and courage has been used by God to help other families facing life-threatening disease. The journey shows the power of the human spirit to turn tragedy into triumph. One 13-year-old boy planted the seed that has grown to help thousands of families from all over the world regardless of their race, color, or creed.”


Brent’s Place is built on a strong foundation of love, community, and remembrance. Every day, we honor Brent’s loving memory by keeping hope and healing within reach for families searching for lifesaving treatment options far from home. Donn adds, “Brent, not this project, has changed my family’s lives and the lives of all of our Brent’s Place families, volunteers, donors, and staff who have made Brent’s Place possible.”  


All proceeds from Donn’s memoir will be donated to Brent’s Place – order your copy today!















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