Families struggle to rebuild after Renton apartment fire

RENTON, Wash. -- Families who lost almost everything in a massive apartment complex fire are struggling to rebuild their lives.

Whitney and Eric Warner are grateful for what they still have.

"It's all gone, I'm starting over. But everything I care about is still here, and that really helps," said Eric as he surveyed the charred ruins of their unit.

Eric and Whitney were in their upstairs apartment Sunday afternoon when they smelled smoke and discovered the building next to theirs was on fire.

Within moments it became clear the winds would spread the flames to their building, so they got out as fast as they could.

Whitney was preparing a salad for a baby shower that day. The couple is expecting their first child in September, a boy named Liam.

"I'm healthy, baby's healthy, my husband's healthy. We are, in a sense, in good standing," said Whitney. "Now it's time to focus on what's important, and that's him."

Investigators are still trying to determine the cause of the fire. It destroyed a three-story building with 12 units, and another building with four units.

Several other apartments in a third unit also sustained heavy damage.

Eric's parents and brother were visiting when the fire broke out, as were Whitney's parents. The couple also has two dogs.

"I was terrified," Whitney said. "But it all happened so fast, and we just knew we had to get out. That's all I was focused on."

Friends have set up a gofundme account for the Warners to help get them back on their feet.

"We've been amazed at the support network we've got," said Eric. "That has hit me emotionally more than what we've lost. People are amazing."