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Family destroys Lake Michigan house before nature gets it

GANGES TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) — The owners of a house along Lake Michigan in western Michigan decided to demolish it before nature did.

Relentless waves and high water have scoured the lakeshore, destroying or threatening properties that have been in families for generations.

Helen Curtis-Foster and family members decided to bring their house down in Allegan County’s Ganges Township, between Saugatuck and South Haven. The house was just feet away from the edge of a collapsing dune.

“We really felt we were in the fight against time,” Curtis-Foster told MLive.com. “It was getting scary.”

The demolition was completed this week, leaving only a cement pad. The job cost less than $20,000, Curtis-Foster said. Moving it or recovering pieces of it following a collapse would have cost of hundreds of thousands of dollars.

“It’s a sad thing,” Curtis-Foster, 68, said.

The house was made with cinder blocks in the 1940s but was greatly enhanced with additions and better materials over the years. The family plans to put a gazebo on the site.

“If you needed a place to stay, my parents would be there for family, friends, whatever,” Curtis-Foster said.

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