As Naperville firefighters went from home to home after a fierce tornado ripped through a neighborhood late Sunday, they came across a couple trapped underneath the rubble in their destroyed residence.
The fire department's technical rescue team responded to the home in the Cinnamon Creek subdivision, and under low light conditions, removed the debris, eventually reaching the trapped husband and wife.
"They did an extraordinary job and bringing these folks, recognizing them identifying them, and then extricating them from the rubble," said Naperville Fire Chief Mark Puknaitis.
Both victims - who are in their 60s - were transported to Edward Hospital and are expected to recover from their injuries, authorities said.
While neighbors began to assess the damage and started to clean up Monday, the couple's loved ones dug through what's left at the home, expressing gratefulness for their relatives' survival.
"it’s like all the memories, gone," said Sienna Patel, the victim's niece. "I can’t even make out where any of the rooms are."
More than 130 homes were damaged in the city, and six others were injured, but miraculously, no deaths were reported.
Puknaitis, the fire chief, says things could have been much worse.
"That’s something to celebrate today," he said.