ZANESVILLE, Ohio- Earlier this week two furious business owners on Putnam Ave slammed the city and landlords for allowing the neighborhood to deteriorate. Now a family who owns the home across the street from Nicol’s reached out to share their side of the story.
As you walk down this block on Putnam you see an area overcome with blight, but the family that owns this property says there’s more to this neighborhood than meets the eye.
The Paxson family grew up in this house on Putnam Ave many years ago. They remember a time when the neighborhood was full of love and laughter, but Cheryl Moody said what they see now breaks their hearts.
“It broke our hearts to see it. My mother and dad took very very good care of this property.”
Cheryl and her siblings jumped into action working for years to purchase their childhood home. Now they’re working hard to restore it to its former glory. Teri Paxson said they’ve done quite a bit of work on the home that you can’t see just from the sideline.
“We’ve covered up the windows, gotten rid of the trash, hopefully gotten rid of the vagrants that want to live here because we’re going to keep an eye on this property,” shared Paxson. “We’ve put scaffolding up. My brother Kenny has put electric in here.”
So when the family heard the owner from Nicol’s say their home is unkempt they were taken aback. Paxson insists that that’s just not true.
“It said in the paper that she had to pay someone to cut our grass. That’s not true, you know. I’d like to talk to that person if it actually happened,” said Paxson. “My brother is very diligent about cutting this grass. The only time he didn’t cut this grass was when he was in Texas putting power lines up for people from the hurricane.”
The family acknowledges that work needs to be done to help mend the broken relationships in the area. Moody said finding a way to work together would be a start.
“I wish they’d get a committee of people that care, like Fred Buck. Like me. Like my sister. Like a lot of people in this town.”
The family does agree with the City on how to manage the growing homeless situation in the area and that’s with compassion.
“When we look at people that maybe we think are lesser than us, a lot of peoples one or two paychecks away from being where these people are,” said Moody. “We need to talk. We need to make some decisions. And we need to bring the love back.”
The Paxson family hopes to one day work together with the city and the owner of Nicol’s to come up with a solution to revitalize the neighborhood.