Only on 10: Tour of flooded Cranston apartments

In order to go into the Dean Estates apartment complex in Cranston you must wear boots, gloves and a mask to block the smell.

On Labor Day, rain flooded some of the apartments. And in matter of minutes, the apartment started filling up with water.

At the time, the Sullivan family was in the living room with their 4-year-old daughter and the child's grandmother when a door blew out and the storm water rushed in.

Four days after the flood, Jeremy Sullivan took NBC 10 through what was left of the first floor unit.

"We got into the apartment (Wednesday) and again (Thursday). We tried to salvage paper and documents that we could, but I never did find my birth certificate," Julie Sullivan said. "It doesn't matter anymore. Everything in there, it's gone."

Inside the apartment, black mud covers every floor and surface. Precious household items were tossed around in a confusing pile.

"There's a TV in here that's not even from my own apartment," Julie Sullivan said. "Even stuff that you'd be able to normally salvage out of just water, because of all the sewage on it, there's no point in even trying."

But in the middle of the debris, the family did make a few discoveries.

"Well (Jeremy's) uncle's ashes were found. We didn't find the necklace the urn was hanging on until we went home and we started rummaging through the family album books and started drying out pictures. Then I found my ring first which was my grandmother's ring," Julie Sullivan said.

The family seemed to be keeping a positive attitude, despite the total devastation.

NBC 10 has learned that the buildings will be rebuilt, but there's at least one family who won't be living there.

"We will not stay here again. I think they should rebuild, but I think they need to solve this issue. They need better drainage," Julie Sullivan said.

Officials said it could take up to six months to reopen again.