Peoria couple juggles devastating damage and arrival of first baby

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PEORIA, Ill. — After their basement wall collapsed during storms Friday, Peoria couple Ryan Biggs and Amber Riggs still can’t return home.

The couple said the storm, which reportedly poured down more than six inches of rain, ruined more than just their basement.

“Basically everything shut off. There’s no power,” Riggs said. “There’s no gas, the sewer lines were ripped so the house is uninhabitable right now.”

In the meantime, the couple has been staying with Biggs’ brother. But this incident was complicated even further due to the fact that Amber is about a week in a half away from having a baby boy. She said her unborn son was her first priority.

“After the incident, I went to talk to my OB/GYN because I just wanted to make sure that my baby was okay,” Riggs said.

Riggs said with her due date being so close, it doesn’t look like they’ll be able to welcome their newborn to the place they know as home.

“It would be nice if we could actually bring our baby home after the hospital, but that’s not an option,” Riggs said.

Making the situation more difficult, the couple also said after calling the emergency line for their insurance agency, the insurance refused to help.

“They basically said “hey, let’s go over your coverage and … you’re not covered” and that was it,” Biggs said.

However, Biggs said the insurance agency recently agreed to send a representative over to their home to document the damages. But there’s still the matter of repairs. Riggs said they’ve been working on ways to get their basement repaired even without their insurances’ help.

“We’ve actually signed a contract with a company to come out and fix it,” Riggs said. “So we’ve gotten an estimate and so we’re trying to work on gathering the funds to cover it.”

Biggs said throughout this time he and his wife are grateful for the overwhelming amount of support they’ve received during. He credited his father and brother for saving the first level of his house by helping him put beams under the floor.

The couple also has a GOFUNDME page to help pay for the damages. They said they’ve appreciated everyone who’s donated.

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