Unfriendly? Now they know why

MARYSVILLE – When Mark and Debbie Crawford moved from Utah to the Hidden Lake Estates three years ago, they wondered why their neighbors weren’t very friendly.

“I thought it was the ‘Seattle Freeze,’” Debbie said of that city’s reputation for being unfriendly. “I thought we could warm them up.”

What they didn’t find out until about a year later is that neighbors kept to themselves because of a nearby drug house. She and some of her neighbors talked about the problem with Mayor Jon Nehring at a meeting this week.

The Crawfords moved here from the Ogden area. Mark is Mormon but Debbie isn’t. “They help their neighbors, take care of them,” Debbie said, adding the LDS church probably plays a role in that.

They lived there for 30 years, in a home Mark built. He had a drywall business, and Debbie worked in interior design. They moved to Marysville when they found out their son had a terminal illness. She takes care of him, while Mark works for Harley Davidson.

When they moved to Hidden Lakes Estates they saw some trashy houses, but tried not to judge. Debbie wanted to find playmates for her grandkids so she walked around the neighborhood. “They were on edge.”

Parents wouldn’t let their kids even walk over to the Crawfords unless they were escorted. “We thought it was because they didn’t know us and were just being cautious,” Debbie said.

But it all started to make sense when they found out about the drug house. They have seen activity there escalate, especially in the past year. Trash is piled all over, front and back. Numerous vehicles are parked all around. “Police are there all the time,” Debbie said.

She said the people who come out of the bushes and frequent that house are “really creepy. They are here, there, everywhere. They look in our mailboxes. At night they walk around with their phones.” The Crawfords were so afraid they didn’t want their picture taken.

Wednesday, Debbie said she hopes finally something is happening. She said police were there the day before and made some arrests. When the troublemakers finally leave, Debbie said she wants to have a neighborhood party.

“When they get out of here we’re going to have a tailgater,” she said.

The Crawfords aren’t sure if they will stick around when their lease is up in October. “I’ve seen too much,” Debbie said. “I’d never even seen a (drug) needle before until I came to Washington.”

She said getting rid of the drug house could be key. “If it doesn’t go way, we have to go away,” she said.