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Laura's House Helpers

Ending the silence around domestic violence

Terri Chaney and Shirlee Gau

Sporting island-style attire, more than 350 supporters of Laura’s House filled Newport Beach’s Island Hotel for the Bahamas Nights gala, sponsored by Laura Khouri and Michael K. Hayde, for the signature fundraiser for the nonprofit dedicated to ending domestic violence.

Guests – including TV personality, philanthropist and wife of Dr. Phil, Robin McGraw, journalist Carolyn Johnson, and Elizabeth Eckman of Pimco – were greeted with upbeat island tunes and mai tais from Tommy Bahama’s Island Grille before heading into a luxury silent auction.

The evening program took a somber turn when speaker Nancy Tran took the stage to underscore the need for the mission of Laura’s House. Tran recounted the traumatic night when her ex-boyfriend doused her in gasoline and lit her on fire, resulting in emotional and physical scars she will bear for a lifetime.

“Without the support of the community, rebuilding violence-free lives for families would be nearly impossible,” said Margaret Bayston, Laura’s House CEO and executive director.

This year’s gala netted $400,000 for Laura’s House, which over the past 21 years has provided shelter and support services to more than 4,000 women and children, and other assistance to nearly 50,000 more.

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