Illinois oak cut down after branch kills 2 men at fireworks

Updated: Jul. 9, 2018 at 12:47 PM CDT
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ROCK ISLAND, Ill. (AP) - A towering oak tree has been cut down in western Illinois after a huge branch fell and killed two men watching a fireworks show.

Sixty-one-year-old Daniel Mendoza Sr. of Rock Island and 72-year-old Lawrence Anderson of Moline were killed July 3 outside the county courthouse in Rock Island.

Rock Island County Sheriff Gerry Bustos gave part of the tree to family members Saturday. He says the tree was considered dangerous after the deaths and needed to come down.

Witnesses said they heard a cracking sound; some assumed it was fireworks from the show.

Daniela Mendoza says her family plans to use wood from the tree to make memorials for her father and Anderson.

Mendoza's funeral was held Monday. Anderson's funeral was on Saturday.

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