EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

New Hampshire

October 31, 2012

Trees crush houses in Windham

Falling trees cause some serious damage

WINDHAM – Wind-tossed trees crashed around Fox Street during Sandy, narrowly missing some families.

“Probably around 3 o’clock, it got windy. We came out to the back sliding door here and were looking,” Brad Howse said. “All of a sudden, we heard a crack and we ran to the front of the house and the tree dropped and went right through the roof.”

“It is destroyed,” Howse’s friend, Lisa Zappala said, observing the damage.

They were having to look for new housing, at least temporarily. Howse was awaiting word from town officials about whether the home could be used.

He didn’t have plans.

“I don’t have any yet,” Howse said.

But he was thankful no one was injured.

“Everybody is OK,” he said. “Nobody got hurt.”

Beth Venuti lived across the street and was watching TV with the kids in the living room early Monday night.

“I heard a big crash, bang and then felt the house move,” she said. “We sat there stunned for a minute, got up, turned on the outside light and saw the tree across the deck.”

But, she, too, was grateful no one was hurt.

“Everyone is A-OK,” Venuti said. “We’ve got some frazzled nerves. Other than that, we’re good.”

Her son, Anthony, had a moment to remember.

“All I heard was there was a big crack, then a giant boom and then the house shook,” the youngster said. “Then I looked outside because everyone was, like, moving the flashlights around. Then I saw some branches on our front porch.”

Yesterday, he led a tour of the damage.

“This is the tree that fell down,” Anthony said, pointing to the sawed-up pieces around the yard. “It just took down most of our porch.”

Public Service of New Hampshire called Windham one of the worst hit towns in the state, predicting it could take up to five days to restore power to some homes.

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