Oh, Christmas tree: Floyd shares boughs

Published 9:11 pm Friday, November 19, 2010

Not often does someone have the opportunity to give something of such significance to the community at Christmas time.

For Fannie Floyd, that opportunity is now.

On Monday, employees with the Troy City Grounds Department will come down Surry Street with saws a-buzzin’ to cut down Floyd’s towering cedar tree. Then, with tinsel, bows and twinkling lights, will transform it into the Community Christmas Tree.

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The three-inch cedar was given to Floyd by her uncle Grady Windham in 1990.

“The cedar wasn’t much more than a twig,” said Floyd’s brother-in-law, Pete Jordan, Sr. “She put it in a pot and took care of it for about two years until it was strong enough to survive on its own.”

The cedar grew almost like a weed but maintained its Christmas tree shape over the years. Floyd realized that one day the tree would have to come down because it would interfere with the city’s utility lines. She wanted it to be more than a stack of wood and thought it would make a good community Christmas tree so she offered it to the city.

Raymond Sexton, the city’s grounds superintendent, went to look at the tree and suggested giving it more time to grow.

In 2009, he gave the cedar a second look and said that it needed to grow a little bit more.

“Raymond said that it should be ready in a year,” Jordan said. “So, it’s time.”

Floyd hasn’t had second thoughts about the cedar coming down. She’s proud that, as the Community Christmas Tree, it will serve such a noble purpose and bring joy to so many during the Christmas season.

The city of Troy will usher in the holiday season with its annual Christmas Parade and Tree Lighting Ceremony on Nov. 29.

Floyd will be on the square when the tree’s lights are turned on as a signal that the Christmas season has arrived. And, she’ll watch with a happy heart.

Jordan said Floyd’s gift was given with love for the place she calls home.

Floyd has long been a member of the Troy community, first, as a “number please” telephone operator and then as office manager for South Central Bell.