SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – Students at Godley Station Elementary, representatives of the Park & Tree Commission and the city of Savannah Park & Tree Department gathered on Thursday morning to celebrate Arbor Day and honor a lost educator. 

The Arbor Day Foundation has declared Savannah a “Tree City USA” since 1985 for its natural urban forest. Today the city celebrated Arbor Day by planting a tree with Godley Station Elementary School students and allowing them to read poems they wrote about wildlife conservation.

Savannah Alderwoman Kesha Gibson-Carter says preserving trees is preserving Savannah. 

“The collaborative efforts that we make with our tree partners, as well as the board of education, and the city of Savannah — it really is important because it’s public display gives us the opportunity to pause to let us know how important it is to preserve trees, how important it is to plant trees,” she said. 

The tree planted at Godley Station Elementary is dedicated to Christa Eallonardo, a counselor at the school who unexpectedly died over winter break.