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Ont. family living in Port aux Basques loses home to Hurricane Fiona's wrath

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The home of a former Barrie, Ont. family living in Port aux Basques, Newfoundland, was destroyed as Hurricane Fiona hit the coast last week.

Captured in a photo by Wreckhouse Press and shared worldwide, the image shows the blue home teetering on the edge of a cliff before being swept into the sea.

For Peggy and Josh Savery, the now iconic photo is a reminder of everything they've lost.

"It breaks you every time you see it because it's still so surreal. It's hard to believe," Peggy said.

Peggy and her family are among dozens in the small coastal town of Newfoundland sifting through storm wreckage that carved out a path of destruction across parts of Atlantic Canada and eastern Quebec.

"For us, we lost everything, but I can't even explain the devastation that others have gone through," Peggy said.

The family moved to Newfoundland three years ago. The 80-year-old home represented a dream of a coastal retirement.

"We wholeheartedly believed that once the wind passed, made a splash, and it was done we would be going back to our house the next day. No one expected this level of devastation," Josh said.

Aftermath of the Savery family home in Port aux Basque, N.L. (Submitted by Peggy Savery)

While the community pulls together, Peggy's former colleagues at Ardagh Bluffs Public School in Barrie are offering their support.

"It really came down to Peggy supporting all the kids and staff at our school, and I'm here today to help her," said Greg Harris, former Ardagh Bluffs Public School teacher-librarian.

A GoFundMe campaign created by one of Peggy's sons is being shared far and wide.

"It's really hard for people here, away from them, to know how to help them. I mean, everything is gone," said Allison Thomas, former principal at Ardagh Bluffs Public School.

Washed away by Fiona, Peggy hopes the money will also help others as the road to recovery is expected to be long.

"It's not something we know where it's going yet, but it's definitely not just about us," Peggy said.

As of Thursday afternoon, nearly $27,000 had been raised.

Peggy said it's too early to know if they'll rebuild as they piece their lives back together.

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