SPRINGFIELD, Mo- In mid-June, Ozarks First interviewed Athena Gideon about a sinkhole that appeared under her family’s driveway. Now, at the end of July, the sinkhole has been filled.
Gideon says she and her family are relieved.
“We’ve had it repaired, and it’s finished. We just had our driveway re-poured this week. We’re just feeling a lot of relief, it’s been a long six weeks,” she says.
After Athena found the sinkhole on June 9th, she began the process of filling it by speaking with the City of Springfield and Greene County officials to see if there was anything they could do. Both told her she’d have to get a geotechnical engineer since the hole is on private property.
Gideon says the geotechnical engineer referred them to several contractors to fill the hole and repair the driveway; they went with one of those companies. The next few weeks involved crews filling the hole with gravel, starting with bigger pieces on the bottom and smaller on top, and repaving the driveway. She says crews also helped fix the front porch of the home and provided help with a potential problem in their backyard.
“They were also kind enough to point out some other areas that weren’t draining properly. Part of the work that they did with filling the sinkhole, they first had to remove that loose soil. So, they took that soil and put it in our side yard,” says Gideon.
She says that was a big help since she has a few animals, including two dogs who frequent the backyard.
In the process of clearing out that loose soil, Athena’s family found three medicine bottles, one with the name ‘Owens’ written on the bottom. Those bottles were, in fact, medicine bottles from an Owens Pharmacy many years ago. Gideon says she is sure the bottles might be worth some money, but she is thinking about turning them into a decoration. Ozarks First looked up the prices of these bottles, and some appear to be worth up to $19.
In June, Gideon told reporters she thought the process would cost between $15,000-$25,000. Now, the Gideons are looking to pay around $16,000 but do not have a final invoice.
“Our community, friends, and strangers have really pitched in to help us, we’re so grateful. So far, we’ve been able to raise roughly $11,500,” she says, referring to money made up of a mix of community help, personal savings, and some personal loans. Gideon also had a local business owner created a date night package for anyone to win if they donated to the family.
“We’re just very grateful for a supportive community and all the help that people have shown us, we really appreciate it,” says Gideon.