Real-life ‘Grinch’ steals tree from Lee County neighborhood

SOUTH FORT MYERS, Fla. — An unidentified “Grinch” stole a neighborhood Christmas from Eagle Ridge Golf Club on Wednesday.

Connie Hope and her neighbors were supposed to continue an annual tradition of decorating the 11-foot tree Thursday.

“We have fun and enjoy it,” she said. “It’s a community thing. There’s usually 10 or 12 people that do it.”

But the neighborhood woke up to find the tree was missing, Pat Burke of the Eagle Condo Association said.

“Real-life Christmas Grinch is right!” he said. “You know, the only thing I can say is anybody that has that kind of evil morals to them ‘We want to make Fort Myers great again. Bring back the tree back for crying out loud!'”

The tree was not returned. However, this Christmas story has a happy ending.

The supplier company of the tree found out the tree was stolen and will be donating a new one for free.

“That’s part of the Christmas spirit, I guess,” neighbor Al Washington said. “Not what we get or receive, but what we give.”

The neighborhood will receive a new tree Saturday.