WEST SEATTLE CRIME WATCH: Headless statue by carless bridge

If you haven’t yet had a chance to go see the newly installed tribute to the “patron saint of the broken bridge” – reported here last weekend – we’re sorry to tell you, you missed your chance. Two people sent us notes this morning, both beginning “This is why we can’t have nice things” … this one (and the photos) came from Lars (who sent us the original announcement too):

The Delridge Maritime Historical Society is saddened to announce that the Rolf Neslund bust lasted less than a week before being vandalized and stolen. Though his time was short, his memory remains strong.

A curse upon the Rolf haters; “a spiritual burning barrel awaits ye!”

Seen in (relatively) happier times:

If you are just catching up, Neslund was the freighter pilot who hit the old West Seattle Bridge in 1978, leading to the chain of events that resulted in the construction of the currently closed bridge.. He gained extra notoriety a few years later as a murder victim.

P.S. This is not the first bridge-side statue theft.

39 Replies to "WEST SEATTLE CRIME WATCH: Headless statue by carless bridge"

  • Amy Thomson September 24, 2020 (12:09 pm)

    Damn!  I went by to pay my respects to the statue a few days ago.  It was a really great sculpture.  I really liked the way they captured the texture of the hat.  And the glasses, and the scowl.  I’m so sorry to see such a great piece of art stolen or destroyed.

  • Al King September 24, 2020 (12:10 pm)

    Stealing this???? That’s scraping the bottom of the barrel!!

  • Just wondering September 24, 2020 (12:15 pm)

    What was the head made of?  Is it being melted down as I write this?

    • chris September 24, 2020 (12:24 pm)

      And who is the artist? Love it. sorry. Loved it.

  • emcat8 September 24, 2020 (12:23 pm)

    VERY nice play on the famous New York Post headline! I bow and scrape. Man, I hate people. I just really hate people–this was such a cool idea and I’m so sorry for the people who put this together.

  • Deb September 24, 2020 (12:27 pm)

    UGH – Do we have to send Mrs. Neslund after you?

    • J September 24, 2020 (8:56 pm)

      I Don’t think she would be one to mess with – she hired a hit-man to do in Mr. Neslund.

  • Rick September 24, 2020 (12:32 pm)

    People are starting to really pi** me off. I’d like to hear an explanation from those responsible as to “why”?

  • uncle loco September 24, 2020 (12:49 pm)

    Poor Rolf. Even after 30 years he can’t rest in peace. I wonder if his ghost had something to do with this.

  • Peter S. September 24, 2020 (12:51 pm)

    “This is why we can’t have nice things” – exactly.  Unfortunately, I wondered how long this would take, but I didn’t think it would be quite so quick.  To those who argue Seattle isn’t dying, I present Exhibit A.

  • WhatTheWhat September 24, 2020 (1:17 pm)

    Wait, what am I missing? He crashed his plane into the old bridge and we erected a statue to him. My husband is a pilot and if he did that,  he would get his license stripped away not a statue in his honor. 

    • WSB September 24, 2020 (1:58 pm)

      Ship pilot.

    • ChrisW September 24, 2020 (2:42 pm)

      Do you haven’t any notion of satire? 

    • West Seattle Born & Bred September 24, 2020 (3:25 pm)

      Hmmm, To quote – “where were you when the ship hit the span?”

    • Wendell September 24, 2020 (4:41 pm)

      I’m glad you’re not a pilot of any kind.

  • sgs September 24, 2020 (1:34 pm)

     You are so  lost…….wake up people who did this.  There is so much more to life.

  • Be better September 24, 2020 (1:37 pm)

    I’m calling Father Brown now. Bust, spectacles and hat to be returned around 9pm tomorrow night. 

    • H September 24, 2020 (7:09 pm)

      Ha! Thank you for this, haven’t thought about Fr. Brown in a while.

  • Balderdash September 24, 2020 (1:46 pm)

    Wow… thank you WSBlog for adding the murder of Rolf article.  So his alcoholic thieving wife shot him dead, then burned his body… then all the crazy things that happened with the trial.  Perhaps her San Juan County supporters decided he didn’t deserve a bust. What a nutty story~! 

  • RolfHead September 24, 2020 (1:53 pm)

    I want a Rolf head for my garden!   This was a short lived installation in any case.   Thanks to the creators for a good laugh.  Lord knows we need it.  

  • TS September 24, 2020 (2:09 pm)

  • Ken September 24, 2020 (2:25 pm)

    Make a cheap plastic copy to go on the plinth. Maybe it will become legendary like the photo of Francis Farmer at West Seattle High-school.

  • Amy Thomson September 24, 2020 (2:44 pm)

    This was pure, vicious vandalism.  The statue was made of cast concrete.  It’s not like  tweakers could make money selling it for scrap.  And it was funny.  Damn!

  • Statues September 24, 2020 (2:45 pm)

    Has anyone checked to see if the Walking on Logs sculptures are still there. With no one driving by daily, they may have disappeared too and that would be sad too.

  • aRF September 24, 2020 (3:07 pm)

    Return the head people! This is bad juju, just like when Peter and Bobby took the Tiki idol.

    • HowAboutNow? September 24, 2020 (9:41 pm)

      You win the internet today with that reference!!!!

  • Balderdash September 24, 2020 (4:54 pm)

    This does remind me of the stolen Totem Pole on Alaska and 35th… quite a story if you don’t know it.https://westseattleblog.com/2010/01/stolen-totem-pole-now-back-in-west-seattle-but-not-home-yet/https://www.historylink.org/File/10071

  • JJ September 24, 2020 (6:18 pm)

    Or when the bull was gone.

  • WTF September 24, 2020 (11:29 pm)

    AHs. And I know you little worms are reading this. You sad, miserable pos

  • Weaver September 25, 2020 (3:30 am)

    It’s selfishnessseems a preponderance of these days

  • Theo September 25, 2020 (4:59 am)

    Where were you when the ship hit the span?

    • Technically Correct September 25, 2020 (3:35 pm)

      Median age in Washington is 37.7.  The bridge was hit in 1978.  So the answer to this for most living Americans is “not yet born”.https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_U.S._states_and_territories_by_median_age

      • waikikigirl September 25, 2020 (7:17 pm)

        @Technically correct, not technically true I was 23 in 1978 

        • Dictionary September 26, 2020 (8:39 am)

          Did they teach the words “most” or “median” back in the 70s?

          • waikikigirl September 26, 2020 (9:33 am)

            Are you referring to my comment Dictionary? If so, yes they did.They also taught the words “respect” to others belongings and to your elders to which a lot of people do not know in these days.

  • Rick September 25, 2020 (9:23 am)

    Then there’s always the old Bee’s Meat Market cow. At least twice!

  • Still#1? September 28, 2020 (8:53 am)

    Americans are terrible. No respect for our surroundings or the public, in general. Explains why we are where we are today.

  • SKE October 10, 2020 (3:27 am)

    Utterly ridiculous and such a sad state our once beautiful city has come to. But I have never heard this story before and I apologize but I can’t stop laughing. Wonderful story and how juvenile of them to take such a thing. But still laughing! (the comments are just priceless too) Never, ever laugh when I am on the WSB, much needed though.

Sorry, comment time is over.