SURFSIDE, FLA. (WSVN) - Survivors are understandably struggling two years after the Surfside condominium collapse. While one man escaped with his family, he says he is still haunted by the tragedy every day.

The unthinkable June 24, 2021 collapse of Champlain Towers South is now marked by somber anniversaries, but for survivor Gabe Nir, the traumatic memories are something he lives with every day.

“It still feels like yesterday,” he said.

Nir, his teen sister Chani and his mother Sara escaped with nothing, except the most important thing: their lives.

“I mean, our apartment was literally six feet below ground level. That’s what everyone told us. Like, ‘You guys, we’re very lucky,'” said Nir.

But his anxiety, guilt and sadness cast a long shadow over the 27-year-old.

“I mean, we feel fortunate to make it out, but I feel that I have that sorrow, that guilt of me making it out but not them, and I don’t want to have that feeling,” said Nir. “People say, like, ‘Yeah, your life is good.’ Oh, it’s not.”

Between rentals and hotels, Nir said, his family has moved roughly 10 times since the collapse.

“In such a short span of, like, two years, it’s from place to place to place to place for moving. Oh, it was terrible,” he said. “It just feels like we’re always in a suitcase. It’s never been a time where we actually feel like we’re actually fully settled.”

Nir said he is still not settled, because he remains on constant alert, noticing everything, even an expired elevator certificate.

“Everyone tells me that I have [post-traumatic stress disorder]. I for sure know that it’s very bad. Any movement just triggers back to the night of that happening,” he said.

The Nir family had only rented unit 111 for about six months before the collapse.

“So our apartment is right across the pool,” said Nir.

Nir shared pre-collapse pictures and videos with 7News, showing skyline shots from the roof of the doomed building, and how close they lived to the pool deck area. One picture was taken on June 23 at around 1:48 p.m., hours before the building caved in.

“Super intense thunder, like, feeling that you feel like the whole ground is shaking,” said Nir.

Unlike many others who were asleep in the building, Nir, his sister and his mother all happened to be awake.

“All of a sudden, you just hear you just see all that white smoke, like coming up into our apartment,” he said. “I remember hearing my mom screaming, ‘Earthquake, earthquake!’ I see there’s a huge gap, like a huge sinkhole, all the concrete from the first floor, of that pool deck.”

Part of the building came down minutes later. Those minutes were crucial, because it allowed them to run out of the building.

Nir made one of the first calls to 911.

“Me saying, ‘Holy expletive, and as soon as I said, ‘Holy [expletive],’ that’s when the second collapse happened, which was our building, our part of the apartment collapse,” he said.

Now, more than two years after that terrifying night, Nir is still having trouble moving forward. His plan to go to medical or dental school was put on hold.

“What if this never happened? What if this happened in the daytime? What if, like, there are just endless, endless, endless questions?” he said. “The more you ask, the more you get, more what ifs.”

So many”‘what ifs” that Nir continues to ask, even if they were unlikely to ever be answered.

He credits his mother Sara’s quick thinking that night for saving him and his sister, as his mother told them to run, and they did. He calls his mother a hero.

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