Raleigh firefighters help raise money for pregnant woman and family who lost nearly everything in fire

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- Adriana Mauricio Yanez, who is expecting a baby in May, and her family lost almost everything after a fire at her apartment complex Friday on Navaho Drive in Raleigh.

It was one of two apartment fires that day.

To make matters worse, her husband, who is a painter, was just laid off because of COVID-19 and they don't have renter's insurance.

"It was something unexpected," Yanez said. "I never had a situation like this. We're displaced and worried. I'm pregnant and this situation was very difficult, especially now with the coronavirus."

Raleigh Fire Division Chief Kevin Coppage said the blaze started in a vacant apartment with electrical issues, above the apartment Yanez shared with her husband and brother-in-law.

Water from a pipe that burst and water used to douse the fires damaged their apartment and displaced the family during the pandemic.

"We have high intensity of anxiety right now, uncertainty," Coppage said. "We don't know what's going to happen the next day. For you to have something like that to come on, it really tugs on the heart. That really makes us become more compassionate."

That compassion moved some firefighters from Fire House 11 and community members to gather donations for the Yanez family. They presented her with baby items and a $400 gift card.

With many people spending more time at home because of the coronavirus, Coppage said this is a good time for people to get their affairs in order.

"Looking at their properties as far as renters insurance, make sure the smoke detectors are there, making some of those safety things around the house that they possibly could have overlooked through the course of everyday work and rushing to take the children to soccer practice and doing all the ballet and things," he said.

The Yanez family was moved to another apartment and Adriana Yanez's husband is looking for more work. She said she is thankful for the community's support.
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