Beloved church maple tree taken down, but will live on

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by GARY CHITTIM / KING 5 News

NWCN.com

Posted on August 25, 2010 at 4:49 PM

Updated Wednesday, Aug 25 at 5:44 PM

SEATTLE – The last of several giant maple trees that graced the grounds of the historic Magnolia United Church came down Wednesday, in front of church and community members who shared a deep love for it.

"It means a lot to this school. The kids love it." said Camberly Gilmartin, whose children attend preschool at the church.

Church leaders say the old maple was dying and becoming a safety risk. They held a prayer service around the giant tree last Sunday. They loved it and hated to see it go.

But, they found some consolation in knowing that part of it will be coming back. The tree parts were taken to an urban lumber mill a few miles away where the Meyer Wells Company has become famous for helping people preserve a piece of their favorite trees.

"Humans have a really strong connection to trees," said John Wells, president of Meyer Wells. "Especially if they grew up with them or have lived around them for a while."

Meyer Wells has made fine furniture for many customers, including public libraries and the University of Washington, out of beloved trees they had to cut down. Part of the grand old maple at the Magnolia church will become a grand old maple table for the church's entry area.

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