Mom Speaks Out After Surviving Tornado That Killed Her Husband and 2 Kids: 'You Just Have to Keep Going'

Kuri Bolger said that although she felt "excited" to reunite with her 8-year-old son, she also felt "so sad that it was just us"

A Missouri mom and her 8-year-old son are determined to honor the memories of their family members who died earlier this month after a tornado swept through central Iowa.

Kuri Bolger, who was hospitalized with severe injuries, lost her husband Michael, 37, their daughter Kinlee, 5, and son Owen, 2, as well as her 63-year-old mother, Melissa Bazley, when the tornado hit on March 5, according to the Associated Press.

"It's a roller coaster of emotion," Bolger, 33, told Good Morning America.

She added of her son Brysen, who survived, "Thank God he made it through and everybody was able to save him because, at this point, he's my rock."

Bolger spent over a week in the hospital after breaking her pelvis and leg, per GMA.

While she was still hospitalized, she recalled feeling "excited" to reunite with her son, who did not suffer any major injuries. However, the moment was emotionally difficult, and Bolger said she also felt "so sad that it was just us."

Bolger and her family had gone to Iowa to visit with her family, including her mother and stepfather, who survived the tornado along with one of Bolger's brothers, per GMA.

It was a trip filled with plenty of quality time together, and Bolger says she feels "thankful for that."

"We took the time to go on a family bike ride or go on a hike in the woods and just explore," she told the outlet. "I also have a lot of pictures and videos, which I'm thankful for."

"My mom would always have her phone out and I'm like, 'Mom, put your phone down. We're just hanging out.' But now I have all those memories, things we can look back at," she added.

Bolger family
Kuri Bolger and family. GoFundMe

As for the future, the Missouri mom said she will carry on her late family members' legacy of kindness.

Bolger told GMA that her husband Mike "did everything for everyone else," and that her mother "was just a bright light in everybody's world."

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As for her children, her daughter Kinlee "always really cared about other people before herself," while her son Owen was universally regarded as the most "polite 2-year-old."

"I think there's going to be really hard days and days that it's a little bit easier," she remarked, noting that no matter what, it's important to remember "that you just have to keep going."

A family friend previously told PEOPLE Bolger is "surrounded by love" as she continues her recovery.

"For now I can tell you that she's surrounded by love, support and is grateful for the generosity the community and world has offered," Kayla Nutt, who set up a GoFundMe campaign, previously shared.

"She's strong as hell and we all believe in her and [Brysen's] healing and recovery ahead," Nutt added.

As of Monday, the campaign has raised over $554,000.

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