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Estero couple recovering after Ian, faces setback with fire

Fire at Estero home
Posted at 4:05 PM, Jan 18, 2023
and last updated 2023-01-18 19:42:44-05

ESTERO, Fla. — A couple on the road to recovery after Hurricane Ian is picking up the pieces again, this time after a fire sparked at their home in Estero Wednesday morning.

"When I swung the door open to the camper, I saw the smoke coming the front of the house and I screamed at the top of my lungs, fire…fire," said Susan Tangredi.

Tangredi, her husband, and three dogs have been living in a camper in front of their home that is in rehab after Hurricane Ian. She explained that her home was her dream home since she stepped foot into it in the 90s.

Her family was slowly recovering from Ian and was starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel of recovery, until Wednesday morning when she saw her home in flames.

“The only way I can describe it is that I heard popping sounds," Tangredi said. “All we could do is scrambled.”

Scrambling, and grabbing their emergency bags from Ian, Tangredi, her husband, and three little dogs were able to get to safety away from the fire. The family is currently living in a camper that sits in front of their home that is under rehab after Ian.

Tangredi said what hurts the most is knowing everything she saved from the storm is now gone.

“I think what is more devastating now is all of the important stuff that I was able to salvage from Ian was in that room, so now I lost everything," Tangredi said.

“My husband was making phenomenal progress with heavy installation sheets. He was just getting to sheetrock the kitchen so we were really seeing the light," Tangredi said.

The couple was hoping to move back into their home within the next few months, they were even looking at first-of-the-year sales for televisions and furniture.

“Now it just looks like it needs to be knocked down," Tangredi said.

Looking at her home after the fire, she said it was the exact same feeling she felt the morning after Ian.

“I feel very robotic at the moment. It's surreal,” Tangredi said. "This morning... there are just no words...there are no words.”

She is unsure what her family will do, they need a few days to process everything that happened before coming up with a game plan.

”I can completely fall to pieces or just muster everything I can to hold my little family together,” Tangredi said.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation.