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www.wmfd.com - Crews in Florida spent Sunday tearing down the house where a man was swallowed by a sinkhole as he slept in his bed. }}" />

   
 
 
SInkhole Home Demolition In Seffner, Florida

Story By: Larry Stine

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  Original Published: 3/4/2013

Crews in Florida spent Sunday tearing down the house where a man was swallowed by a sinkhole as he slept in his bed.

As Ashley Porter shows us, they were also trying to save family treasures from being destroyed.

As pieces of the house ripped apart. decades of memories and photos peeled away with them.

"Terrifying, heartbroken, just don't even know what to think sometimes. All those memories, childhood, down the drain," says Jordan Wheeler, the victim's cousin.

A painful sight for a tight-knit family already grieving the loss of a loved one.

The search has been called off for Jeff Bush, the man swallowed by the sinkhole that struck the house Thursdsay night.

"I had my eyes closed. I couldn't watch. It was too hard," says relative Wanda Carter.

Officials are now calling this a demolition effort.

But it's also a preservatkion effort.

Firefighters dug through debris to save a charred family bible and as many keepsakes as they could.

"We got some of what we wanted, belongings, but it doesn't make up for the house, all the childhood, all the memories, stuff they can't replace," says Wheeler.

Meanwhile, crews stood by to make sure the house didn't give way.

They likely won't know until Monday about how demolition and time have affected the sinkhole.

"We didn't know if any vibrations would maybe set it off to where it would collapse. Surprisingly, everything is holding up," says John Lyons, Hillsborough County Public Utilities Director.

Bush's relatives are trying to hold up, too.

Remembering the 37-year-old who they say was dedicated to family.

"I think about him every day. Every day. It's hard to sleep now," Wheeler said.

   
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