Kamloops resident appalled to see statue of late grandfather vandalized | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

Current Conditions


Kamloops News

Kamloops resident appalled to see statue of late grandfather vandalized

A statue featuring Kamloops resident Ashley Speers' grandfather was vandalized.
Image Credit: FACEBOOK/Ashley Speers
April 02, 2021 - 5:00 PM

A Kamloops resident is venting her frustrations that a beloved statue of her later grandfather had been vandalized.

The statue outside of the Kamloops Art Gallery is a commemorative wildfire sculpture featuring Ashley Speers’ late grandfather Mario Biasotti.

Biasotti was one of the victims of the 2003 McLure Wildfire that destroyed 72 homes. As part of the statue, created by Vancouver artist Cameron Kerr, honouring wildfire victims, pilots, firefighters and volunteers, Biasotti can be seen sitting on a bucket.

Speers discovered the statue had been vandalized April 1 with anchor signs and “ahoy a sailor was here.”

“I was pretty disheartened by it, I was kind of mad because coming up this year was the 10-year anniversary (after his passing),” she said. “It’s super disrespectful. To see that happen to any statue is really disheartening.”

Biasotti, originally from Italy, lived in Louis Creek and had a little hobby farm with his wife. When Speers was eight years old, she remembers how her grandparents stayed with her family during the fire considered one of the worst in B.C.'s history.

Due to this fire, 3,800 people were evacuated (880 of these people were evacuated for a second time) from the small communities of McLure, Barriere and Louis Creek. The fire reached a final size of 26,420 hectares, according to the province. Biasotti also lost his home in the blaze.

“He was just well-known in that community and they thought he was a good candidate to be a part of the statue,” Speers said.

She wants people to know what it means to her to see his statue vandalized.

“I just wanted to rant about it because this isn’t right… he isn’t with us anymore so that pushed me over the edge, this is personal.”

The city has been contacted but no complaints were made to the Kamloops RCMP, Speers said. The vandalism was still on the statue as of April 2.

Speers and her cousin are considering cleaning the statue themselves if it's not addressed.

Sgt. Brandon Buliziuk, with the Kamloops RCMP, said a file has not been reported this month in relation to the vandalism incident but officers will be looking into the matter.


To contact a reporter for this story, email Carli Berry or call 250-864-7494 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

We welcome your comments and opinions on our stories but play nice. We won't censor or delete comments unless they contain off-topic statements or links, unnecessary vulgarity, false facts, spam or obviously fake profiles. If you have any concerns about what you see in comments, email the editor in the link above. 


News from © iNFOnews, 2021

  • Popular vernon News
View Site in: Desktop | Mobile