[The Brazil Times nameplate] Overcast ~ 74°F  
High: 74°F ~ Low: 46°F
Sunday, May 1, 2016

Tree-cutter to the stars

Monday, July 28, 2003

The old maple tree fell to the storm. A new generation of Skeltons are cleaning up the aftermath. Randy Skelton, 43, has been busy cutting up trees downed or damaged by the severe thunder storm of July 9.

On Friday, Randy was removing trees in the Forest Green subdivision. One of his helpers was his 16-year- old nephew, James Skelton.

Randy works for his dad, Jim Skelton, who has been doing tree work for over 40 years. Randy also does free-lance work on his own.

Recently returning to Brazil after 15 years in Nashville, Tenn., Randy said he has done tree work for country artists Randy Travis, Louise Mandrell, Bill Carlisle and Boots Randolph.

Randy learned the trade from his dad when he was about eight-years-old. Some of it came easy. Other lessons were learned the hard way.

He recalled one such experience. "We were bringing down this tree close to a cabin," Randy explained. "Me and my two brothers were holding on to ropes tied to this big branch.

"We were to hold it long enough till it swung out away from the cabin then let go. But I had wrapped the rope around my wrist. When the branch went down I flew up and was parallel to the ground. My brothers called me Superman after that. It looked like I was flying."

The Skeltons do quick work. Within six hours three big trees and several smaller ones, with all the debris, were cut, chipped, loaded and hauled away. Even the stumps were gone.

After they unloaded the truck and put equipment away they were done for the day. But thanks to Indiana weather, they never seem to run out of work.

Respond to this story

Posting a comment requires free registration: