When Hurricane Idalia Led a 100-Year-Old Oak Tree to Almost Crush Ron DeSantis’ Mansion in Florida
The wife of Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, Casey DeSantis, tweeted about a horrible event that happened in August. She had revealed that while Hurricane Idalia made landfall close in Tallahassee, Florida, a century-old oak tree had fallen on the governor's mansion. No one was hurt, according to the state's first lady, who claimed she was inside the mansion with their three children, Madison, Mason, and Mamie, at the time. "Our prayers are with everyone impacted by the storm," she had written on X while posting a picture of the enormous tree's splintered trunk.
100 year old oak tree falls on the Governor’s Mansion in Tallahassee — Mason, Madison, Mamie and I were home at the time, but thankfully no one was injured.— Casey DeSantis (@CaseyDeSantis) August 30, 2023
Our prayers are with everyone impacted by the storm. pic.twitter.com/l6MOE8wNMC
Casey's tweet showcased the big tree that had been split in half leaning on the family's house, a nearby car, and a piece of the road. As per CBSNews, the Florida State Capitol is only a few blocks away from the old home, which was constructed in 1907 but was later reconstructed in 1955 because it had become physically unsafe. Sims Wyeth, a Palm Beach architect, redesigned the structure in the Greek Revival architectural style, and it is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. When DeSantis won the position in 2019, the governor—who is also a Republican candidate for president—moved into the mansion with his family. Throughout the storm, DeSantis has been holding regular news conferences from Tallahassee, and he claimed to have been told of the tree's collapse.
As per People, shortly after the storm passed, the governor and other government representatives gave a press conference to update the public. After the photo of the tree in their mansion was posted on social media, a reporter questioned him while he was standing at the podium about the safety of his wife and children. “We’re fine,” the Republican leader had assured the journalist. “In fact, Casey called me probably about 45 minutes ago and told me, says, 'I guess, there’s a really ancient oak tree split in half, and part of it fell,' ” he explained. DeSantis further clarified, “I don’t know that it fell on like the residence, per se. I think it was a little bit off to the side, so that’s gonna be cleared.” The governor added that if the whole oak tree has to be cut down and cleared, then “that’s just gonna be more room for my kids to hit baseballs in.”
He claimed that even though the family had appreciated the tree, they would be "quite alright" if storm damage forced its removal. Mamie, their youngest daughter, was delivered in the Governor's Mansion for the first time in more than 50 years. As per CNN, Idalia was the fiercest hurricane to make landfall in the Big Bend region of Florida in more than 125 years, with surges of up to 16 feet and winds of up to 125 mph.
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