Tree falls on house during windstorm

Michelle Anderson was home with her 10-year-old son Jordan about 5:30 p.m. Wednesday evening, May 19, as the wind blew outside, when they heard a “snap” and the house shuddered.

A large locust tree standing next to their driveway at 751 23rd Ave., had uprooted and fallen across the north end of the house where Anderson lived with her husband Ken and their five children.

The tree punched three holes in the roof and demolished the master bathroom, she said.

Anderson hustled Justin, who is disabled, to the other end of the house. Then, she said, she started making phone calls.

“I’m from Mississippi and I’ve lived through five tornadoes, but I’ve never had a tree fall through my roof,” she said Thursday morning as workers from Andrews Tree Service cut up the tree on the roof.

Ken Anderson arrived home shortly after the tree fell, and their older children came home to find a house that fire officials said was unihabitable due to structural damage. Friends took the children in for the night and a friend put Ken and Michelle up in a motel, Michelle Anderson said.

She said Friday that damage is estimated at apprximately $20,000.

Sweet Home Fire and Ambulance District Battalion Chief Shannon Pettner said firefighters responded and turned off power to some areas of the house.

The tree “was not something we could remove,” she said.

Pettner said that was the only fallen tree the department got a call on during the wind storm.

Michelle Anderson said she is less than five classes away from getting a master’s degree in criminal justice and public administration and recently signed a deal to have her first novel published.

“I’m stressed out right now,” she said. “Now I don’t have a house.”

An account has been set up at Key Bank to help the family. Contact Dana Flores at the bank for more information.