Home for terminally ill in Chili devastated by flash flooding

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CHILI, N.Y. – A home being built for people who are in their last days of life was badly damaged earlier this week by flash flooding. 

The Story of Hope Comfort Care home along Marshall Road in Chili hasn’t even opened for hospice patients yet but already sustained major damage to the foundation and basement after more than 3 inches of rain fell early Wednesday morning causing severe flash floods.

A team of dedicated volunteers has been working for years to make the home for terminally ill patients a reality.

“We were just so close, literally weeks away from opening after over eight years. We were just so close,” said board member Diane Celento.

Video taken early Wednesday morning shows the entire yard submerged and water up to the front door of the new home.

Things went from bad to worse when the water started to recede.

“The entire wall fell in on the south side,” explained Celento. “Seventy feet of basement wall all fell in so there’s a stop work order in the house and nobody can go in.”

Because the home was so close to opening, the board and volunteers had started to move items and donations into the basement. Those are all lost, too.   

“We’re waiting to find out if our insurance is going to cover any of this. We did have construction insurance but we still don’t know. The claims adjuster came out yesterday morning, took pictures, and we’re just hoping for the best. Again, The Story of Hope – one more time to hope,” Celento said through tears. 

The damage beneath the brand new house is severe.

“We’re certainly not going to be opened in weeks, which was the original plan, but all of our hearts are in it. We still want this house to be open,” Celento said.

An online fundraiser has been set up to help.