York man killed by falling tree

YORK -- A York man died Saturday morning after he was hit in the head by a falling tree, authorities said.

Roger Dale Adkins, 48, of 5025 Spicewood Drive was working behind a small barn at his sister's house when a gust of wind blew over the large, dead tree, said York County Deputy coroner Johnny Love.

"It was a freak accident," Love said. "I don't really believe he knew what hit him."

Brenda Craig said her brother was working to clear some land for a future home for his wife, Judy, and their son, Roy.

"He was taking some rubber mats to the barn," Craig said about Adkins, who had lived in York for nearly 20 years. "He was riding a lawn motor, pulling a cart behind it."

He made it to the back of the barn with the rubber mats in tow, Craig said.

"He had just got off his lawn mower," Craig said. "That's when the tree fell. We heard the tree when it fell. It sounded like it hit the barn, but it didn't."

As family and friends grieved, they took comfort in Adkins' helping spirit.

"He was one of a kind," said Anne Duncan, a family friend who lives in Rock Hill. "He would do anything for anybody at any time."

Like Duncan, Craig recalled her brother's legacy of helping others.

"He say, 'We'll get it. We'll get it,'" she recalled. "I tried to get him to slow down today. He said, 'I will when I get it done.' He'd never get it done because there was always something else. He was a workaholic."