The owner of a San Bernardino saloon is asking for the community’s help recovering a staple of her business – a giant chicken statue.
Stacy Jaen, 43, of Westchester discovered the roughly 500-pound fiberglass fixture missing from the roof of her business, the Screaming Chicken Saloon, on the morning of Oct. 23. The chicken had nested there for over a decade, since Jaen purchased it shortly after taking ownership of the Devore establishment 14 years ago.
Jaen says the chicken – which she purchased for $1,500 – was the first big purchase she made for the saloon. She intended for the 10-foot statue to serve as a local landmark, and once it had been lifted by a forklift onto the roof of the business, it was easily visible from the nearby Interstates 15 and 215.
Now that it’s missing, Jaen says, she’s "heartbroken."
"It has the most sentimental value," she said. "Even if I did replace the chicken, [I’d miss this one]."
But replacing the statue isn’t an option. Purchasing a new one would cost her $2,500, which Jaen says she can’t afford.
She took to social media, posting a plea on Facebook. The post took off, with users lamenting the loss of the icon, with one user confirming that she used it as a landmark while driving on the freeway.
Some users and customers have theorized that the wind blew the statue off the roof, she but she says it was tied down with cables and has remained stable against harsher winds in the past. The cables, she added, were discovered to have been cut after the chicken disappeared.
Jaen reported the incident to the police as a grand theft on Monday, but says she won’t press charges if the person or people who stole the statue returns it.
Until then, she hopes someone from the community finds the chicken so it can be returned to its home.
"Most likely it’s going to be in someone’s backyard," she said.