Vandals Destroy Shade Trees in Carbondale

CARBONDALE, Pa. -- The effort to make part of downtown Carbondale more beautiful was cut down this weekend. Vandals wrecked a number of trees planted by volunteers over the past decade.

It can be rather busy on Wurts Brothers Lane in Carbondale. The walking path connects a shopping plaza with 7th Avenue and the downtown.

Now, the lane has lost a handful of trees to vandals.

Elyssa Morris walks along the lane often with her daughter and noticed the broken trees. Plus, a flag was torn down from the pole, and the vandal or vandals hacked at another tree over the weekend.

"I think it's children with no respect. The children around here, this day and age, people don't have the same respect for things as a little trail people come on," said Morris.

"I can't believe people just disregard their community and all the efforts. Where's their conscience anymore? I don't understand it," said Maria Lawler, secretary of the Carbondale Shade Tree Commission. Lawler discovered the damage.

"They're done. We have to take them out and have to replace them. If we replace them, is it going to happen again?" she said.

The folks who spearheaded the effort for trees in Carbondale found the damage Sunday morning. One tree was ripped right out of the ground and damaged for good. They hope the folks who did this are held accountable.

The small group of dedicated volunteers teams up with students to plant trees each Arbor Day. Next year, it will take more money, mostly grants and donations, to bring back what was lost. A GoFundMe account has been set up to help pay for repairs.

"Each year, they'll send us one of those tree city flags to put on the flagpole which needs to be fixed," said Shade Tree Commission member Tony Mikloiche.

Volunteers said they spent a weekend recently sprucing up the lane.

Police are now looking for whoever is behind the damage on Wurts Brothers Lane in Carbondale.