KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — Paige and Corey were only 2 weeks away from their wedding when a fire destroyed their home and everything in it. Now, with just 6 days until they say “I do”, they are thankful to still have each other.
A neighbor who saw the house burning on his way home, felt the need to do something to help. Micheal Cody had never met Paige and Corey despite living just down the road, but when he saw the house burning, he jumped into action.
“The fire department had blocked the street so I had to sit there for about an hour while the house burned down. It was just overwhelming helplessness. It’s one of those things where I’m just sitting here watching this fire burn down and it was like I was watching my own house burn down.” said Michael.
He immediately started a fundraiser on Facebook, raising money to help Paige and Corey get back on their feet. He also went to local businesses such as Chick Fil A and Food City asking for additional donations for the couple.
Paige and Corey lost everything in the fire including Corey’s wedding band, the suit he planned to wear on the big day, and their two dogs Buddy and Lila. They were stunned at the overwhelming amount of support from the community and the willingness of Michael Cody to help them even though they were complete strangers.
“You don’t realize how much you’re loved you are until a tragedy happens but I mean it’s part of life. It’s the ugly part of life and you just gotta keep moving forward.” said Corey.
Paige and Cody are in temporary housing until they figure out what their next move will be. For now, they are focused on their October 26 wedding.
“Whatever happens happens, we’re still going to get married at the end of the day and the little stuff doesn’t matter.” said Paige.
When everything dies down and they’ve had a moment to process, Paige and Corey plan to pay it forward by starting a non-profit to help other families who’ve experienced the same ordeal. They want the chance to be there for someone else like their community was there for them.
The fire is still under investigation. The cause is unknown at this time.