Vandals hack trees at E-W

  • Eric Stevick<br>For the Enterprise
  • Monday, March 3, 2008 12:58pm

EDMONDS — Vandals who cut down a dozen trees in the Edmonds-Woodway High School courtyard Monday night, June 18, also shook the school’s psyche.

“It’s like somebody stabbed you in the heart,” said Alan Weiss, the school’s principal. “The kids are devastated.”

Many students and teachers were clearly sad and angry when they first saw the fallen trees beside their hewn and chopped stumps.

The trees — ash, cherry and snowdrop — had been planted when the campus opened in 1998. Over the years, they became an increasingly larger part of the stately campus, which includes a 76-foot tall clock tower and sun dial.

“It feels empty,” said Darrel Yung, a sophomore, as he surveyed the courtyard.

The trees were valued between $40,000 and $50,000, according to initial district estimates. They’ll need to be replaced by smaller trees that will transplant better, Weiss said.

School officials believe the trees were cut down between 11 p.m. Monday and 5:30 a.m. Tuesday and have asked students for leads to help track down who did it.

Edmonds police have been brought into the investigation.

It appeared more than one person was involved based on the tools used, Weiss said. Some trees were sawed and others chopped.

“I was shocked when I saw it this morning,” said Al Zugel, an art teacher. “It was really sad. I think whoever did this is very troubled.”

Students and teachers were already talking about how to raise money to replace the trees, including having them turned into mulch and selling it.

Katie Gary, a freshman, said she was looking forward to watching the trees grow bigger and taller during her four years at the school.

“It’s kind of depressing,” Gary said.

School officials were thankful a landmark Japanese maple was spared. The tree was believed to have been planted as a seedling when the previous Edmonds High School was built in the late 1950s.

Eric Stevick is a reporter with the Herald of Everett.

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