Beloved Portland tree falls during wind storm

Published: Jan. 6, 2023 at 9:11 PM PST
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PORTLAND Ore. (KPTV) - During a windy day on Wednesday, some lost their power. However, one neighborhood at Southeast 74th Avenue and Southeast Stark Street not only lost that briefly but a beloved tree too.

Before falling, Jim and Phyllis Fisher, who own the home where the tree sat, explained its roots in the community ran deep.

“It was time,” Jim Fisher said. “The tree’s been here ever since I’ve been here. I’ve lived her my whole life and the tree’s always been here.” That’s 72 years.

Phyllis Fisher said it was always leaning a tad, but on Wednesday the Fisher’s noticed new cracks in the sidewalk and looked up to the tree slowly tilting more and more.

We noticed it was leaning a lot,” Phyllis Fisher said, “and my son looks, and he goes, ‘It’s going down!’”

Beloved Portland tree falls during wind storm
Beloved Portland tree falls during wind storm(KPTV)

To their surprise, the couple said it fell gracefully as the branches and powerlines softened the fall. Hitting the power lines, though, the tree surged power to their home, leading to a blown fuse to their furnace and forcing the Fishers to cling to their fireplace.

SEE ALSO: Demolition begins on fire ravaged Portland church

The collapse of the tree brought up memories of times since passed with their kids.

“We used to hook a jump rope to it and play jump rope with them,” Phyllis Fisher reminisced.

The Fishers would hang dinosaurs to the tree’s branches, which were once toys for their kids. Jim Fisher said they would catch the eye of neighbors out and about. “Little kids liked to look at it,” he said.

“They’d stop by and take photos,” Phyllis Fisher added.

Phyllis Fisher would also hang what they’d collect on walks together on the tree, which acted as a lost and found of sorts. Jim Fisher said the neighborhood took notice and started doing the same.

“People would come by,” he said laughing, “some would take stuff and others would leave stuff.”

The tree fell and up came its roots, and so too, the sidewalk. Jim Fisher said that’s not much of an issue since they’ve “got a back door,” he laughed.

Despite the loss, the two are grateful it fell towards the street, rather than towards their home. The couple is not confident their brick home would have stood a chance.

Phyllis Fisher said they’ll miss the tree, calling it “sad.” However, Jim was keen to point out a bright side. “I’ve outlived it, so that’s a plus,” Jim Fisher said smirking to his wife.

Beloved Portland tree falls during wind storm
Beloved Portland tree falls during wind storm(KPTV)

The tree fell at the same time as the couple has been attempting to sell their home. The reason for the sale is because of what they call, “a road that’s too busy and noisy.”

The road getting busier over time is another reason they’re sorry to see the tree go, as it had acted as protection for their home from potentially out of control drivers.

Jim Fisher hopes the city comes back to clean up the mess and hopes he’s not on the hook for the damage to the sidewalk.

The pair is happy they won’t have to rid their gutters of the tree’s pine needles any longer.