A 178-year-old house on South Columbus Street in Sunbury recently went through a facelift, and is getting a new life.
Dan and Cindi Gremling held a ribbon-cutting ceremony last Saturday for what they are calling The Sunbury House.
The Gremlings host a non-profit in Columbus called “Girls With Attitude.” The Sunbury House, at 91 S. Columbus St., will be a home where they will raise an adopted disabled son, Freddie, who attends Big Walnut Elementary School.
Beginning early next year, the Gremlings will also take in up to three pregnant girls and women, giving them a home through childbirth.
“There are programs in Columbus that will give a mother a home for two years if they keep their babies, but there are no programs in central Ohio for mothers who want to give babies up for adoption,” Cindi Gremling said. “That almost forces young women to have an abortion, even if they don’t want one. That’s a need we hope to fill at The Sunbury House.”
Cindi Gremling has researched the home; she has original ownership papers and news articles.
First known as the Roberts-Luthi House, 91 S. Columbus was built by James Roberts for Rufus Atherton.
Vallory Petterson attended Saturday’s open house to share some of her family’s history in the house. Petterson’s grandparents, Ernest and Adele Fivav, lived there while her grandfather was a Nestles general manager; her mother and sister lived at 91 S. Columbus during World War II.
Larry and Ruthie Voit, who also attended Saturday’s open house, donated the Sunbury House to the Gremlings.
During a tour of the house, Cindi Gremling said some tasks still need completed before girls are brought into the home. The kitchen needs to be rebuilt, and the basement laundry needs moved to the second floor.
“First, and foremost, it will be our home,” Cindi added. “Then, when the home is ready and the need arises, girls will come and stay with us.”
Reporter Lenny C. Lepola can be reached at 614-266-6093