Despite a devastating fire that consumed her entire home and most of her possessions, Sarah-Elizabeth Graham Harbison doesn't feel as if she has lost anything at all.
That's because Harbison and her then-fiancé, Anthony, thought they had lost their 8-month-old black Labrador puppy named Lily in a blaze at Oak Ridge Apartments in Cullman, Alabama, earlier this month. As it turns out, they were wrong.
The couple was told that there was nothing left in the wreckage of their apartment. But last week an insurance adjuster told them he would try to retrieve the remains of their beloved puppy for them to bury, according to a post on Harbison's Facebook page. When he got there, he found the dog was alive and in the apartment.
The insurance adjuster could hear whimpering and cries coming from the debris, which led him to find the puppy and pull her out of the rubble, The Cullman Times reported. She was trapped in her kennel the whole time, which may have protected her from falling debris and saved her life. She was a little singed, but otherwise alright.
"We were just wanting to get her body so we could bury her, but there she was," Harbison told the outlet. "I’ve never been happier."
The fire, which broke out on July 11, started in a bottom unit and rapidly spread across the complex, NBC 13 reported. Harbison tried to get to Lily before escaping the burning apartment, but the floor collapsed and prevented her from doing so, according to The Cullman Times. Harbison's son, Noah, was not at the house at the time.
The couple lost everything they owned and suffered from some burns and smoke inhalation, but are expected to make a full recovery according to Harbison's Facebook post.
“I don’t feel like we’ve lost anything, really,” Harbison told The Cullman Times. “We’re just so happy to have her back.”
Harbison and her fiancé have since gotten married, and the whole family, including Lily, are now settled in a new apartment.