A piece of heavy equipment parked in the driveway of an Airport Heights home has caused quite a stir. Neighbors were excited to learn Thursday that the abandoned home it sits in front of is being torn down.

No one has lived in the house on Sunrise Drive for at least 25 years. The boarded-up house was abandoned, frustrating neighbors as it slid into decay.

Helen Howarth raised her children nearby. She said the house has always made her nervous.

"You aren't as comfortable because right around the corner is a place the neighborhood kids can break into and get hurt," said Howarth.

The home does have an owner, whom the city said paid her taxes and did what was required to secure the home. According to neighbors, she received plenty of offers to sell over the years but never did. That changed when Kevin Klott and his young family moved in across the street.

Klott contacted the owner and said he was worried that his children would grow up near a home that was becoming a magnet for crime. In his words, he laid on the guilt.

"I come from a long line of Catholics, and my mom and dad taught me that if you want to get one thing done, you guilt," said Klott. "So, I let her know how my family felt about her house."

Long story short, it wasn't long before the owner put a for sale sign on the house. And an even shorter time before it was sold. Rashad Rayess is the new owner. He also lives in the neighborhood. Rayess said he plans to tear the old house down and build his family's dream house on the lot.

Neighbor's couldn't be happier. There are several abandoned houses in Airport Heights but not many that have been vacant for more than two decades. On Thursday a small crowd gathered to take a look at the excavator in the driveway.

They'll be back when the heavy equipment begins its work.

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