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Artist Remakes Stolen Sculpture For Grieving Family

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(credit: CBS) Rachel Slavik
Rachel Slavik joined the WCCO team in October of 2010 and is thrill...
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MERRIFIELD, Minn. (WCCO) – A new carving always brings a new challenge for sculptor Pat Scrimshaw.

“Anything that I can do, I’m just surprised that I can do it,” Scrimshaw said.

Yet, with chainsaw in hand, Pat found a way to turn a simple stump into a detailed sculpture.

Through the years, Pat has created some intricate and beautiful pieces, but there’s one that’s never had such meaning. In 2009 Pat carved a 4-foot elephant statue as a way for the Larson family to honor their three-year-old son Jack, who was killed while crossing the street.

Jack’s older brother James says the memorial’s theme was dedicated to his favorite animal.

“My little brother Jack loved elephants,” James said.

Pat said unlike most of the sculptures he creates, Jack’s elephant was different.

“It was really kind of a hard carving because I knew a child had died,” Scrimshaw said.

But in April, Pat was asked to carve the same statue again. The family had to relive their loss when someone stole Jack’s memorial from winter storage

“Somebody is hurting this family,” Scrimshaw said.

Donna Larson, Jack’s grandmother, says she was shocked that a sculpture as heavy in weight as it was in meaning could have been stolen.

“It’s not an easy thing to move around. It was very hurtful to have it taken,” Donna said.

But the new sculpture is helping to heal. The elephant is larger this time around, but despite the minor differences, it still holds the same meaning for those who loved Jack the most.

Replacing his memorial will not replace him. But a least in a small way, Jack has returned home.

“Jack is living right here in his little head. I know you’re watching this,” James said.

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