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Fort Campbell’s 744th Ordnance Company Lends a Helping Hand to Friends of Dunbar Cave

 

Dunbar Cave State ParkClarksville, TN – In March, the 744th Ordnance Company (EOD) part of the 52 Ordnance Group (EOD) from Fort Campbell, along with members of the Tennessee Trails Association, volunteered over 50 man hours and removed 400 lbs. of cinder blocks, 300 lbs. of tires, 200 lbs. of metal and over 50 lbs. of trash.  Platoon leader, Lt. Chris Weber stated, “We worked our butts off.”  He added “Everyone had a great time and really enjoyed ourselves.”

Friends Group President, Lionel Senseney is grateful for the community’s effort to help the Friends Group and expand our park.  “What an effort!” Lionel said, “Many thanks to everyone that is helping.”

A soldier from the 744th Ordnance Company lends a hand cleaning up the "Rather property"

A soldier from the 744th Ordnance Company lends a hand cleaning up the “Rather property”

The cleanup was part of a plan that The Friends of Dunbar Cave is shepherding, aimed at acquiring additional land for Clarksville’s only state park.

One property, “The Rather Property,” is the site of a large collapsed sinkhole that is a known entry point to Dunbar Cave, called the Woodard Entrance.  Mapping of the cave from this entrance was conducted in the 1970’s by members of Indiana Grotto. It is unknown if this entrance has collapsed or is covered up with dirt and trash. The sinkhole has been used for years to dump cars, appliances, tires, and trash. Before proceeding with the purchase of this property, the state required it to be cleaned up.  The Friends of Dunbar Cave, a non-profit that supports the park, has spent $7,000 to clean up the property.

A contractor was hired to remove the large items from the sink.  In January, the contractor removed 13.5 tons of scrap metal, along with other trash.

On February 1, the Friends group coordinated a volunteer clean-up day which was attended by members of the Friends group, APSU Center of Excellence for Field Biology and the American Fisheries Society.  On this occasion, another half ton of trash was removed from the large sinkhole.

Then the 744th Ordnance Company stepped up to help out in March.

Other groups have contacted the Friends group and inquired about helping clean out the sinkhole.  The Nashville Grotto Association contacted the Friends and offered to help.  They are scheduled to have a cleanup day on April 6th.  If you are interested in helping out, please contact Dr. Schiller at SchillerS@apsu.edu  A release form will need to be completed for all volunteers.

To date, almost 15 tons of debris has been removed!

A special thanks should be given to Dr. Sally Schiller. She has worked on the land acquisition project for years. She has made numerous presentation from local players to the State Land Acquisition Board, expressing the ecological importance of the sink and how the property must be saved to help preserve the cave.Her vision of using this feature as an outdoor classroom is finally coming into focus.

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About Blayne Clements

    Blayne Clements

    I am a 30 something graduate from Austin Peay State University, where I graduated in 1997 with two majors (Accounting and Finance). I am a very happily married man, with one beautiful daughter. I enjoy a professional life of public service and a personal life of travel, reading, music, and always trying to learn from others.

    Email: climbingpossum@yahoo.com

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