On Friday September 14th, the residents of Seminole Estates Mobile Home Community were served eviction notices. Rumors had been flying for a while, but those in charge or operations intermittently assured the residents that the community would be run as a mobile home park until 2024. New homes rolled into the park through spring 2012.
Within 24 hours of the eviction, park amenities were fenced and locked. The residents protested over the weekend; the news cameras showed up. The residents protested the following weekend; news crews did not show. But I did, and I have been following the story ever since.
I actually stopped at the park before the second protest. I went into the office run by United Community Management. I stepped up to the window and said that I was interested in writing about the eviction. The manager, Susan Martorano, wrote down a name on the back of her business card. “Here’s who you need to contact,” she said.
In the parking lot I introduced myself to Ray. He had been in the office asking about handing over the title to his home. We started talking and then Ms. Martorano came out.
SM: “Please don’t harass my residents.”
ME: “Ray, am I harassing you?”
RAY: “No” (he winked at me)
SM: “You have to speak to Gary Bitner about it.”
ME: “Got it, but that’s not the story I want.”
As Susan took the last drags of her cigarette, I said goodbye to Ray, wished him good luck, and then got in the car. Then I devised my own plan of how to get into the park. I read every on-line article and perused all the comments. I clicked deeper and deeper and finally found Kathy. She had commented on an article which led me to her Facebook page, where I messaged her, and became her friend. I met Kathy at the first protest…and that’s where my blogging began.
|Kathy Maynard with 2 of her 11 birds. Photo: Ginny Dixon|
I have been writing about the eviction on Miss Blogworthy and will now blog about it here along with all sorts of stuff related to the world of mobile, manufactured, and modular living.
|Donna and Troy at the second protest.|
|Joan sits in an office addition that is no longer standing.|
|It is actually here with Madame Michelle that I first practiced my rusty French.|
|Diane’s strength and passion is inspiring.|
|Raw emotion in an abandoned house.|
|Skirtless at Seminole.|
|Scenes from Seminole Park across the road.|