Tree destroys cabin at Michigan camp, trapping a counselor in bed for 90 minutes

BENONA TOWNSHIP (AP) — A tree crashed onto a cabin with 14 people, mostly girls, inside, trapping a counselor in her bed for 90 minutes early Thursday at a camp in northern Michigan, authorities said.

“Thankfully, the adult counselor walked out of the destroyed cabin and appears to be just fine,” state police said.

Authorities were summoned around 2 a.m. to Camp Ao-Wa-Kiya in Oceana County, 75 miles (120 kilometers) northwest of Grand Rapids. Part of the tree had fallen onto the cabin with 12 girls and two adults sleeping inside.

An area towing service was able to lift the “tree enough to get the lady out,” said Jack White, chief of the Shelby-Benona Fire Department.

“We couldn’t ask for a better outcome,” White said. “This is a Christian camp. My gut feeling is she was laying there, waiting for us to do our job, and prayed while we did it. She didn’t need to be calmed down.”

No other injuries were reported among campers in the cabin.

A state trooper had a minor hand injury.

“We had a little bit of weather come through but nothing bad,” Sheriff Craig Mast said when asked why the tree fell.

White said a portion broke off and dropped roughly 30 feet (9.1 meters) before striking the cabin.

“Most of the other cabins slept through the entire thing. They didn’t know what was going on,” he said.


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