2nd bear stolen in the Boyertown area

July 14, 2009 4:45:57 PM PDT
Over the years, they've become a source of pride and unity for those who live in the Boyertown Area School District. That's why the recent thefts of two life-sized fiberglass bears have neighbors and authorities particularly upset. Det. Dirk Boughter of the Douglass Township Police Department says, "A crime like this is really difficult to understand because there is no point in doing it, other than to hurt the people who are most connected to it."

There were hundreds of people connected to the bear stolen this past weekend from outside Gilbertsville Elementary School.

The statue was decorated with the paint-covered fingerprints of every single student at the school back in 2006. Parents and faculty then meticulously connected the prints with different colored paints to create a wonderful garden scene, complete with flowers, bees, and butterflies.

Gilbertsville principal Dr. Ron Christman tells Action News, "That's why it's a priceless bear to us. Because we didn't have one person come in and maybe design the bear. This was designed with the use of 700 children and probably 80 some adults."

Several days earlier, thieves took the "baby bear" next to its mommy bear outside the Boyertown YMCA.

What makes the YMCA theft especially painful is that the stolen statue was dedicated to a mother and daughter who were killed in a tragic car crash a few years ago.

Images of the victims, Kristin Beers and her daughter Angelina, adorn the part of the statue left behind.

"It was devastating to the family as well as to our YMCA family to have a bear disappear. They're very distraught - we're very distraught. We'd like to see it returned, but we have had no word on it."

If you have any information about this crime you're asked to call the Douglass Township Police Department at (610) 367-0466.