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Members of Clinton Trees Forever are heartbroken over the devastation caused by the recent derecho.

In the sweltering summer heat, we appreciate shade and a nice, cool breeze. In the fall, we give thanks for the beauty of the changing leaves (and delicious apple pie!) When the harsh winter winds arrive, we are grateful for a windbreak stopping the blowing snow. And in the spring, we are thankful for the habitat provided to a variety of birds and small animals.

We give thanks for trees! For many, the trees on our properties, in city parks, or along our streets are close friends. This is especially true for members of Clinton Trees Forever, who have planted thousands of trees in the City of Clinton over the past 30 years. When these friends are damaged or completely lost, it is hard to cope.

As cleanup continues in our community, we must look to the future. With the current damage to Clinton’s tree canopy, now is a critical time to plant a better tomorrow for future generations. Our children and grandchildren deserve the same benefits of trees that we have so enjoyed. (Plus, trees provide the oxygen we need to survive. That’s pretty important.)

A Reforest 2 Rebuild campaign to plant and regrow a more diverse and resilient tree canopy in Clinton’s residential areas and city parks has been established by Clinton Trees Forever. We are asking the community to join us in our efforts. Donations to help fund the purchase of new trees can be made payable to Clinton Trees Forever and mailed to: Clinton Trees Forever, 1622 N. Sixth St., Clinton, IA 52732.

Clinton Trees Forever is a 501©3 nonprofit organization. Its mission is to plant and care for trees and the environment by empowering people, building community, and promoting stewardship. Donations are tax-deductible to the fullest extent allowed by law.

Amanda Eberhart, Clinton