Grantsburg Folk Hero Big Gust has not been in his glass case for a few weeks now. He has not left the case since first installation in 1980.
Rumors were going around suggesting Gust was stolen or damaged after the glass of his case was broken in September.
Chris Bartlett, Grantsburg Public Works Director, told the Sentinel Big Gust was not damaged by the breaking of the window. His crew was cleaning up the glass and took a closer look at Gust, at that point they decided “he needed some tender loving care done to him.”
There is no timeline for when Big Gust will return to his post on Pine Street.
During the move out of the case the statue sustained a few scrapes, like the left ear came off.
“It looks like we can glue it back on,” Bartlett said while showing off the statue to the Sentinel.
While looking at the statue up close, one can see it is not one piece of wood, but a few different pieces put together.
The village board on Monday night approved a bid to repair the statue for $695.
The statue of Ander Gustaf Anderson or Big Gust is sculpted of laminated basswood and is life size. Gust stood at 7’6” and 360 pounds when he was the Village Marshal. The sculptor Alf Manley Olson finished the project in 1980.
Big Gust was born in Sweden in 1872 and served as village marshal, road supervisor, assessor and president of the Grantsburg Fire Department from 1901 till his death in 1926.