On November 23, a fire was discovered outside Gatlinburg, Tennessee, near the top of a steep hill known as Chimney Tops. Named the Chimney Tops 2 Fire, the blaze quickly gained momentum due to very strong winds and exceptional drought conditions and made its way into the community of Gatlinburg on November 28.
The wildfire continues to burn, currently listed at more than 17,000 acres. The number of damaged or destroyed structures has risen to more than 2,400, and 14,000 residents have been forced to evacuate their homes. The county estimates that more than $500 million in damages were caused by the fire.
Right now, the focus is on fighting the wildfire and providing emergency services. But in the months that follow, people will be looking for signs of life. And through our years of Community Tree Recovery Fund efforts, we have found that trees offer a sense of hope and healing.
Your support can help ensure that communities can replant their tree canopies after natural devastations.