Family Said Goodbye to Two Legendary Trees

By Cara Thomas

A neighborhood said good bye to two old friends on Friday. After more than 80 years, the legendary trees on Fourth Street in Herkimer were cut down. But they weren’t just any trees. As Cara Thomas explains, they were some of the largest trees a local arborist has ever seen.

HERKIMER, N.Y. — When the Gertowski family moved into their home in 1976, two Silver Maples stood tall in their front lawn, giving them a shady spot for their two young boys to play.

“My boys grew up and as the stumps came up they had, they became their little chairs and they played with their matchbox cars around the trees,” said Alice Gertowski.

As her children grew, so did the trees. They were so tall they could be seen from across the village. But the taller they got, the more nervous the Gertowski’s became.

“This area has had quite a few major storms going though and we were losing major limbs across the road every year,” she said.

Before a limb could do any major damage to their home, Gertowski and her family made the difficult decision of cutting them down. When the arborists from Rick Turk’s Tree Service got there, they were in awe of what they saw.

Turk said these trees were some of largest they’ve ever cut down. One measured about 20 feet around and more than 6 feet across.

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