Sitting atop his pulp truck, Josh Fournier lifts a tree trunk off a home Tuesday in Manchester. During a storm Monday night, two trees crashed into the house and Herta Freeman was trapped under beams on her couch. Manchester and other fire departments got her cut out and she was transported to Central Maine Medical Center in Lewiston. Joe Phelan/Kennebec Journal Buy this Photo

MANCHESTER — Heavy wind knocked down two trees at a 83 Hammonds Grove property Monday night, injuring one person and heavily damaging the home.

Two trees reportedly fell on the Manchester home owned by Keelie and Glen Freeman around 9:30 p.m. Monday. The trees fell into a portion of the house where Glen Freeman’s mother Herta was watching television. Miraculously, Herta Freeman only sustained lacerations to her head, and is currently at Central Maine Medical Center in Lewiston.

This incident is one of many that occurred as part of a storm that caused 9,783 power outages across Kennebec County. More than 100,000 lost power throughout the state.

On Tuesday afternoon, crews from Fournier’s Tree Service were doing cleanup work at the home. Keelie Freeman said Herta Freeman reported hearing a “loud whirling noise” and thought an earthquake had happened.

“The tree came down and hit her,” Keelie Freeman said. “We heard her yelling for help and when we opened the door,” Glen Freeman’s office was gone “ and we could see down into the living room and she was underneath all the debris.

“My husband broke in the back door and climbed in underneath and sat with her until the paramedics got here,” she added. “We had to hold a beam up … that was sitting on her head and yell for a saw that he had.”


A view on Tuesday of the two trees that crashed into a home in Manchester during a windy storm on Monday night. Joe Phelan/Kennebec Journal Buy this Photo

Neighbor Russell Hubbard said rescue officials cut through the garage before cutting the couch Herta Freeman was sitting on in half to get her out from under the tree. Hubbard said it was “just amazing” that she got out.

“(Glen Freeman) thought his mother was dead and, when he was talking to her, her scalp was bleeding pretty bad and it looked like she was just on her last legs,” he said. “He stayed right with her in there for about 20 minutes, talking to her, praying with her.”

Keelie Freeman said there were broken pieces of wood all around Herta Freeman that narrowly missed her and she required 18 stitches in her head. She is currently being monitored for internal bleeding. She said Herta’s relative lack of injury from the incident was “a miracle.”

Keelie Freeman said some trees on the property would have to be cut down after the incident.

“The center of that tree … is all hollow and rotten,” she said. “They rot from the inside out and they can look OK on the outside and they’re not.”

Manchester Fire Chief Frank Wozniak was not immediately available for comment Tuesday.

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