South Side man fighting for life after tree falls on him

August 28, 2012 (CHICAGO)

Last Thursday morning, the family of 39-year-old Gregory Malone says he was standing next to his car that was being repaired in back of a church when a tree in the lot next to the Hosea Temple Church in the 900-block of East 93rd fell on him.

Malone's sister says Gregory was rushed to Stroger Hospital, where he is fighting for his life.

"His brain is swollen on both sides," said Malone's sister Brenda Welbon. "He has bleeding in his brain, a cracked skull, a fracture to his spine, and he has two broken feet, and a breathing tube, and maybe a blood clot in his arm."

The family says the prognosis is not good, but they are hoping and praying he gets better.

"He is the backbone of our family, my baby brother," Welbon said. "We are just hoping he makes it out of this...We are just waiting for the swelling to go down."

Rev. Eddy Johnson of Hosea Temple Church says he purchased the property the tree was on and that it is in foreclosure. He is the owner of the church property and says residents in the community often use the back of his church to repair cars.

Malone has four children.

"I am hoping and praying that he gets better, because I have the children by him and they need their father," said Veronica Tyler.

Malone's sister says they wanted to talk with ABC7 because the tree was contaminated with ants and termites, and the community is surrounded by many older trees, and she wants to warn them of the possible danger.

"There are people walking around here all the time," said Welbon. "Someone needs to look into this."

Rev. Johnson had the tree removed from the property.

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