Cindi Bonifer looks in shock at her apartment. (KRIS)
CORPUS CHRISTI -
Six families are still trying to cope after they lost nearly everything when their apartments went up in flames Friday.
Cindi Bonifer is one of the residents displaced from Friday's fire. Waters Edge apartment owners say Six families were affected.
Bonifer visited the complex Saturday afternoon. She still can't believe this is her reality.
"We're so lucky to be alive. But a lot of us are in shock today. We don't really know what our next move is although the apartments have been so kind," said Bonifer.
The apartment owner says 4 of the six families are already in new units. No one is allowed in the apartments because of the damage from the fire, but Bonifer says when she was allowed in for a few minutes Friday and she couldn't believe her eyes.
"It appeared as though everything in my kitchen is completely destroyed," said Bonifer. "But it looked like my clothing and pictures were untouched. Maybe some smoke damage."
Like many others, her main concern was for irreplaceable items.
"My daughter is deploying to Japan and I had just put her wedding dress and all of her personal belongings in my apartment for safety while they're deployed in the Airforce," said Bonifer. She still doesn't know if the dress made it.
On Friday flames were first spotted coming from a second-story unit. The fire spread up to the attic, the roof, and into a second unit. It took about a half-hour for crews to knock out the flames. Two apartments were destroyed.
As tragic as the event was, Bonifer says their apartment community really stepped up when it mattered most.
"We were all in shock and crying and we had people we had never met before hugging us and telling us they can help us and it will be alright. We saw people pulling fire extinguishers out and running over here. People we've never met before all of a sudden were like our family," said Bonifer.
The water's edge apartments require renters insurance, so everyone is covered. But the complex is accepting donations in the front office for families. Items those residents are most in need of are food and clothing.
Fire investigators believe discarded smoking material, like a cigarette, caused the fire.
The Waters Edge owners and residents want to thank the Corpus Christi Fire Department and all residents and staff who helped get everyone out safely.