Iconic tree falls at Mattituck Presbyterian Church

12/09/2011 12:00 PM |

BARBARAELLEN KOCH PHOTO | Mattituck Presbyterian Church’s iconic oak will be no more after a section of the tree fell following this week’s wind storm.

Mattituck Presbyterian Church’s iconic oak will be no more after a section of the tree fell following this week’s wind storm.

The tree had already fallen by 7 a.m. Thursday morning when Sexton Jim Gorman arrived at the church to find the entire parking lot overtaken by wood. The tree is rotted in the center, which may have made it easier for high storm winds to shake the large section of the tree loose.

The fallen tree took out the white picket fence on the cemetery side and it damaged the gutters and a railing on the church side, but somehow spared the cemetery’s headstones and the church’s stained glass window.

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Crew leader Gary Gillanders, of Chris Mohr Tree Work, said there was “at least a solid day and a half” of work ahead to cut branches off the tree. After that, Mr. Gillanders said the crew will attempt to cut down the five ton trunk in one piece.

Mr. Gorman hopes William Paulson of Mattituck can mill the wood into usable planks to make outdoor benches for the church.

How many benches will seat future newlyweds and loungers?

“We could probably pull three or four out,” Mr. Gorman said.

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