But on Aug. 28, crews from Limbwalker Tree Service removed the pin oak tree near the southwest corner of Grawemeyer Hall.

The 85-foot-tall tree was dying, and  internal and external arborists deemed it to be a threat not only to the building, but also to students, faculty and staff.

It is heartbreaking any time we have to remove a tree, particularly one that has been as significant as the pin oak, said Larry Owsley, vice president for Business Affairs. Owsley was on site for the start of the removal Saturday.

But the tree clearly was in decline, and four arborists said this was what we needed to do. In this case, we clearly had to put public safety first.