News 2 helps Berkeley County family save a tree that means a lot

BERKELEY COUNTY, S.C. (WCBD) — We have an update to a story we first told you about nearly 2 weeks ago. A Berkeley County couple contacted News 2’s Raymond Owens to try and help them regarding a repossessed home on their property.

They were hoping to prevent the destruction of their sheds, deck and trees. It looks like they don’t have to worry about that after all.

Back on July 27, repossession crews were at Colen Hardin’s property on Old Highway 52 in Strawberry ready to repossess Colen’s son’s mobile home. A court order would allow them remove a large deck, sheds and a number of trees on the property, including a Crepe Myrtle. The tree was planted by Colen Hardin in memory of his son who died in a car accident years ago. In July, Colen said, “They’re not gonna cut that tree down. I’m 77 years old. I’ve got two pace makers. And, well, before that tree goes, I go. That’s just the way it is.”

The roof was damaged during a storm about 17 months ago, so his son moved out and stopped making payments. The mortgage company, Vanderbilt mortgage, told the Hardin’s they would sell the 17 year old home to them for $40,000 but the Hardin’s said they could not afford that.

Irene Hardin told us things have changed since we aired their story. “Since you’ve been here Raymond, we have really really been helped in so many ways now. All these people that did the big talking, they’re not talking that big anymore.”

After their story aired on News 2, Vanderbilt mortgage agreed to sell the home to the Hardin’s for about $10,000.

The Hardin’s went to the bank and took out a loan. Now the home will not need to be removed, and the Crepe Myrtle tree will stay.

Colen says this is a relief. “This has been such a trauma for our whole family.”

The Hardin’s tell us their next priority will be to get several thousand dollars together to repair the roof.

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