So, am I totally screwed?
After 5+hrs of work I ended up with a failed to save error in addition to an error saying "an unknown error occurred while accessing C:\........"
I was unable to save that file with any of my several attempts before SW completely crashed. However there is a glimmer of light. In a last ditch effort, I deleted all the faces and went back to a simple sketch. Then I imported the part into an assembly and saved the assembly. It is still corrupted and wont load, BUT when I try to open that assembly, the part appears in the background. So it has to be stored somewhere right?
In addition, I went to check my auto-recover directory, C:\Users\user\AppData\Local\TempSWBackupDirectory\swxauto, and it is entirely empty, even though the auto-recover function is selected.
The worst part is that it was 5 hours of work after processing simulation data. All of the work/fixes I had made to the model are gone and I cant recall them all.
Edit: In the pictures attached; The first picture you can see the empty directory. Then the second image shows that there is at least a sketch somewhere in existence when I open the assembly save. Lastly, the third picture shows the original screen grab I took when all hell was breaking loose.