MARYSVILLE — A local landmark went missing late last month, and while police are searching for any signs of it, neither the city nor those who funded its installation are especially hopeful about its eventual recovery.
The 4-foot-tall bronze statue of the little boy at Ebey Waterfront Park in Marysville had already had the toy sailboat stolen from his hand a couple of years ago, but between Feb. 21-24 is when city of Marysville Parks officials believe the theft of the rest of the statue occurred, leaving behind only a lone foot on the stone base.
"Marysville Police jumped on this case right away," Marysville Parks and Recreation Director Jim Ballew said. "Photos of the statue have been forwarded to all the metalworking places we know about, to keep an eye out for it, although we can't offer a reward."
Although the Marysville chapter of Soroptimist International raised more than $3,000 to purchase the statue, which its members donated to the city after it opened Ebey Waterfront Park in 2005, Ballew added, "It's not within our deductible, so it's not considered a loss."
Marysville Soroptimist President Kathy Roon noted that the chapter had barely more than 15 members when it managed to fund the statue's purchase, through bake sales and a host of other events.
"They worked really hard to raise those funds," Roon said. "It's really sad when you can't set a piece of public art out in a public place for the enjoyment of the community."
Roon suspects the statue has already been melted down, a possibility that Marysville Police Cmdr. Robb Lamoureux acknowledged could be true, even as he emphasized that this case remains under investigation by Marysville Police.
"When community groups like ours try to beautify the city, and those enhancements are vandalized or stolen, it makes us less likely to want to provide them," Roon said. "We spent a lot of money on that statue, in the hopes that it would be able to be there for a very long time."
The Parks Department's next steps are pending the completion of the Marysville Police investigation. Anyone with any information regarding the stolen statue should call Marysville Police Detective Darryn Wiersma at 360-363-8350.