1 dead after tree falls on home - WCIV-TV | ABC News 4 - Charleston News, Sports, Weather

1 dead after tree falls on home

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Tree tears through Hanahan home (Jon Bruce/WCIV) Tree tears through Hanahan home (Jon Bruce/WCIV)
HANAHAN, S.C. (WCIV) -- A Berkeley County man died several hours after officials say a tree tore through the roof of his home on Leone Court in Hanahan. 

The coroner has identified the victim as 72-year-old William Carl Klein.

The coroner said Klein was in his upstairs den sitting in a chair when the tree fell and pinned him in. Police, firefighters and ambulances packed the small cul-de-sac for hours after a tree fell on the rear portion of the home overnight. A supervisor with Charleston County Consolidated Dispatch said late Sunday night that calls were made for mutual aid in the area.

An emergency helicopter, fire and EMS were stationed along Rivers Avenue early Monday morning.

Neighbors on Leone Court said they heard a crash and saw that a tree had fallen on a nearby home. They told ABC News 4 that they made several attempts to get inside the home. They say they called 911 when they weren't able to get inside.

"In my sleep I thought I heard a thunderstorm. And then I heard commotion with my oldest daughter running, hollering," said Kim Davidson.

She woke up around midnight to the terrifying scene. Davidson's oldest daughter Caroline ran upstairs to help.

"She asked immediately if she could pray with him and last thing I heard her say to him was, 'Oh you were in the Navy for three years.' And she was trying to keep him calm," recalled Davidson.

She says Caroline stayed with Klein until rescue crews could safely remove him from the debris.

"It all happened so fast that we didn't have time to think about anything," said Davidson.

Klein was pinned between the second floor and the ceiling of the downstairs dining room.

"It took about three hours to get him out, to stabilize the ceiling and the floor," explained Davidson.

"Anything like this happens, it’s sad," said Mike Black, who owns a tree service company. He says another neighbor called him after the tragedy because of concerns that a nearby tree could also topple over. Black thinks last Friday’s heavy rains could have caused problems for the willow oak that killed William Klein.

"If it's real wet, holds a lot of moisture, it's going to, a slight wind, it's going to tip over," said Black. 

For now, Kim Davidson’s daughter grieves the loss of her friend.

"When all was said and done she broke down," said Davidson.

Klein was eventually pulled from the home and rushed to Trident Medical Center, according to an official on the scene. Hanahan Police officials said his wife, who was in a separate bedroom, managed to get out. The American Red Cross is assisting the family.

Klein's death was ruled accidental.

  • Bill Burr

    Email: bburr@abcnews4.com Reporter Profile




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