Thursday, November 12, 2009

The Truth About the Beheading...

BFF Jill and I have been working on a new video, "All you wanted to know about Ford City" for Founder's Day, which will be observed tomorrow. We released a bloopers reel earlier this week and a lot of our footage was at the John B. Ford statue in the Ford City Park. This is bringing up a lot of comments about a past "incident" with the statue.

In 2004, a group of young adults, after a night of drinking, came up with the brilliant idea of stealing the statue. Rumors went wild, that they had tried to behead the statue, that they had a rope around it's neck and were dragging it to the river to throw it in.

The town was in an uproar. The Mayor, at the time, tried to make an example of these kids. People wanted to hang them and their parents by their toenails.

A lot of people don't know some real truths about this incident. First, this wasn't the first time this happened. In the 70's, it happened and the kids involved not only got a slap on the wrist, they didn't pay ONE DIME to refurbish the statue. Charles Hanna, a local art teacher at the time, reset the statue. I remember working with Mr. Hanna at Custom Design Monuments, and he told me the story and said that he set that statue so efficiently that "No one will ever get it down again".

Well, I guess they found a way. Yes, they did knock it down and yes, they did try to steal it. They did NOT, however, try to behead it. See, the artisan that restored the statue and reset it reported that the cuts on the statue were over TWO YEARS old. This was reported, quietly, in borough meeting minutes. Most never heard this information. The newspapers never reported this, the Mayor never made a big deal out of it. So, everyone, to this day, still thinks that they tried to behead the statue. TOTALLY NOT SO.

The whole situation totally pissed me off at the time. People were LIVID at these kids, even though they paid every cent to have the statue restored AND did countless hours of community service. The kids in the 70's never even got punished at all. When people would bitch about this situation I would say to them, who can honestly say they have never gotten drunk and decided to do something stupid? If you say you have never, then you are either a liar or a saint.

To those parents who were degrading these kids AND their parents, I would congratulate them on having so much confidence in their children that they thought that they would NEVER do something stupid in their lives. I informed them that WHEN their children do, because we all know we all do stupid things in our lives, I hoped that people would have a little more compassion to them as a parent, than they were having for the parents of these kids.

Again, they got drunk, they did something stupid, they PAID to have it fixed, they DID NOT try to behead the statue and no one went out of their way to publicize this information once it was known. So here, I will do it for them.


Robin said...

Thank you Rhonda for telling the real story.

The Purple Pinkie said...

That's what I do :o)