Annual Rio Linda Pie Sale Scrapped After Pastor’s Wife is Seriously Hurt

RIO LINDA --  "Mine? The Pineapple," said Robert Sanchez.

Have you ever liked a certain type of pie so much you had to explain yourself?

"You fall in love with their apple and you fall in love with their pumpkin. So once you do that, you're like, 'well, let's experiment," Sanchez said.

Sanchez isn't hiding a small town secret. Every year, people travel to Rio Linda from near and far to get a piece of the church's holiday pies.

It shouldn't be a surprise then, that they sell out. It should probably be a surprise why they've been selling them every winter for 35 years, though.

"They're selling the pies for flood insurance," Sanchez said.

The First Church of Rio Linda sits directly below the Dry Creek Floodplain. In the past 40 years, the church has flooded nine times -- most recently this January.

Pastor Bob Royer first shared his heartbreak with FOX40 during that ninth flood. He and his wife, Jane, have since spent 10 months in cleanup mode, until October, when life threw them another curve ball. Seventy-year-old Jane fell and was seriously injured.

"Landed on her left hip. It broke her back, we found out after the x-rays," Pastor Royer said.

The couple had been visiting family in Arkansas. They've been stranded there, at a hospital, for three weeks. Jane was in a coma for four days, but now, thankfully, she will move to a rehab center.

"She's going through a process here that hopefully, she'll come out of," Royer said.

"She's the sweetest lady. She is so sweet," Sanchez said.

She is also the mastermind behind the pie operation. And this year, she won't be able to bake.

"You know, it's supposed to rain a lot this year, so it's really critical," Sanchez said.

Critical to pay that FEMA flood insurance bill by Dec. 10. It's $13,000.

"I set up a GoFundMe," Sanchez said.

Sanchez has been going to the church for 40 years. He's seen all of those floods.

He says the church means a lot to him and is like a second home.

This year, he won't be having any pie.

"I don't even know if we'll have pie, not if Jane can't make it. I wouldn't want to do that," Sanchez said.

You can donate to the GoFundMe account, here.