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09/07/2012 08:29 pm ET

Largest Eucalyptus Deanei In US Faces A Chain Saw In Santa Monica, Calif. (VIDEO)

It makes sense that in the eco-friendly, liberal-leaning city of Santa Monica, Calif., tears would be shed over a tree. But it's also a very special tree.

The city is threatening to fine the owners of the largest eucalyptus deanei in the country up to $25,000 a day if they don't cut it down, CBS reports. Faith and Harry Rumack have lived in the house where the tree is for 25 years.

“It was planted 100 years ago by the native Santa Monicans and is a landmark in our community,” said Faith. “It feels like one of our children. I know it sounds weird, but it’s very sentimental to us.”

And yet, a Santa Monica community forester decided it had to go after one of the limbs, which was more than 2,000 pounds, crushed a neighbor's car, KTLA reports. He said that while the tree looks healthy on the outside, there are signs of decay, and the city doesn't want anyone to get hurt. There are families that live around the tree.

The nearly 100-year-old tree is more than 100 feet high and five feet wide, according to the Santa Monica Community Forester. It was made a landmark in 2003.

“We’re all just devastated. We’re distraught. I don’t want to go into that because I’ll start crying again,” said Faith, who has until September 15, 2012 to cut down the tree.

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(all photos courtesy of Alamy)

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