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Chemours crew cleans Parkersburg streets, parks

Part of company's service initiative

Chemours occupational health guardian Pam Cline, left, and operations manager Dixie Farhatt clean up sticks and leaves along Market Street in Parkersburg on Friday morning as part of a service activity by employees of the polymer manufacturer based at the Washington Works plant in southern Wood County. (Photo by Evan Bevins)

PARKERSBURG — More than a dozen employees from Chemours picked up everything — including the kitchen sink — at two city parks and along portions Market and Spring streets Friday.

Actually, volunteers said it looked more like a bathroom sink. Either way, they removed the fixture from the hillside at Quincy Park and filled approximately 100 bags with trash, sticks, leaves, needles and “a lot of clothing,” said Seth Cressey, quality manager at Chemours.

Cressey even wound up with a discarded Christmas tree in the bed of his truck.

Chemours gives employees a paid day each year to provide volunteer service in the community, Cressey said, with group efforts like Friday’s planned roughly once a quarter. Friday’s project was cleaning up in and around the Avery Street Historic District, along with Friendship and Quincy parks.

“I think it’s great to give back to the city. I was born and raised here,” said Kellie Tucker, document control specialist at Chemours’ Washington Works plant.

Chemours quality manager Seth Cressey cleans graffiti off the wall of an apartment building on 13th Street near Friendship Park in Parkersburg on Friday during a cleanup effort by employees of the polymer manufacturer. (Photo by Evan Bevins)

Pam Cline, occupational health guardian at Chemours, said it was the employees’ way of thanking the community.

“We appreciate the community and the jobs that we have. I think we’re just grateful,” she said.

The Wood County Solid Waste Authority provided trash bags and gloves, and the city picked up the bags.

“(I) appreciate Chemours and organizer Seth Cressey for all they did,” Parkersburg Mayor Tom Joyce said.

Amy Kirkland, who lives in an apartment on 13th Street near Friendship Park, said she was glad to see the volunteers cleaning up Friday. Conditions at the park have improved over the last year or so, she said, with residents pitching in to clean up the area.

Employees of Chemours pick up trash and debris Friday at Friendship Park in Parkersburg. Sixteen employees cleaned up four areas Friday as part of a service activity. (Photo by Evan Bevins)

“It’s so nice to see the little ones come out and play,” Kirkland said.

She was also pleased with the demolition of a dilapidated structure at 1317 Spring St., right next to the park.

“It was horrible,” she said, adding she believed the vacant house had been the site of drug abuse and other criminal activity.

City Engineer Adam Stout said the demolition of the fire-damaged structure began Thursday afternoon. A crew from Empire Builders was removing debris Friday morning, including portions of large trees Stout said “were actually growing in the house. They were right alongside of the foundation, kind of intertwining it.”

Evan Bevins can be reached at ebevins@newsandsentinel.com.

Chemours process engineer Meredith Kulak picks up debris on Spring Street beside Friendship Park on Friday during a cleanup effort by employees of the polymer manufacturer. (Photo by Evan Bevins)

Chemours employee Anne Shamblin, left, places leaves in a bag held open by fellow document control specialist Kellie Tucker on Friday on Market Street in Parkersburg during a cleanup effort by employees of the polymer manufacturer. (Photo by Evan Bevins)

A crew from Empire Builders removes debris from a demolished house and the trees that had grown up alongside and inside of it Friday morning on Spring Street in Parkersburg. (Photo by Evan Bevins)

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