The Calhoun-Cleburne Children’s Center provides free services and counseling to children who have suffered physical and sexual abuse. Director Joe Nabors said two employees were in the office on Leighton Avenue when the tree fell Monday afternoon, but no one was injured. Nabors noted that no children were in the building at the time.
Nabors said he believed the tree was more than 100 years old based on its size.
“It was so big that the front and back door to our office were completely blocked,” Nabors said.
The roof of the office was severely damaged when the tree struck it. One of the chimneys was knocked off and nearly all the rafters on the right side of roof were destroyed. Nabors said on Monday night he sent out an email asking for prayer and the next day it was answered.
Members of the Hillcrest Baptist Church Disaster Relief group came to the Children’s Center’s aid, helping to clear bricks and tree branches, the director said. A boom truck, which is a vehicle with an extendable arm, was loaned to Nabors by state Rep. Mack Butler, R-Rainbow City, to remove the tree from the roof.
“(The truck) saved the day. It made it a lot safer to get on the roof,” Nabors said.
Bobby Boyd Construction secured tarps, donated by the Salvation Army, on the roof after the tree was removed so water would not damage the office, Nabors said.
The director said the Children’s Center didn’t have any appointments Tuesday so the office didn’t need to close for repairs. The roof will be fixed in the near future by Bobby Boyd Construction after insurance estimates are completed, he said.
Nabors said he was amazed by all the help he’s received and thankful that the Children’s Center could remain open to help local kids.
“The Department of Human Resources or law enforcement calls us so often with an emergency case. We don’t want to be shut down at any time,” Nabors said.
Staff Writer Rachael Griffin: 256-235-3562. On Twitter @RGriffin_Star.