A 7-foot-tall, molded fiberglass chicken disappeared from the front yard of a Salt Lake home early Saturday morning, and the bird's owners want it back.
"T.H.E. Chicken," as it is called by neighbors, was stolen around 2:40 a.m. by a man who apparently ripped the chicken from its feet and drove away with it."My neighbors watched a huge man put his arms around the chicken's neck and wrench it from one side to the other until he tore it off its legs," said Harriet Arrington.
The Arringtons, 2236 S. 2200 East, want the bird back because it is considered the neighborhood's mascot.
"Police called this morning and said our neighbor had called them to report that the chicken had been stolen," Arrington said. "Everybody has been around today asking, `Where's the chicken?' "
The Arringtons received the bird as a Christmas gift in 1988 from Rick Sorenson, their son-in-law.
Sorenson wanted to surprise Leonard J. Arrington, former historian for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, with the gift because he is considered a chicken fancier of great renown. Arrington grew up on the largest chicken farm in Twin Falls, Idaho.
"What could they possibly do with it?" Harriet Arrington asked.
"I want my chicken back, but I don't know what we'll do now because it's been broken."
A year ago, the bird was stolen by robbers who later left it in the Highland High School parking lot.
At that time, Sorenson called police to report the theft, but police apparently didn't believe him.
"They (police) thought we were crazy. My son was so mad he got the mayor out of bed because of the chicken. We finally found the chicken at about 3 a.m.," Harriet Arrington said. "We've had so much fun with this chicken and now it's gone."
"We're really upset because the chicken is part of the family," she said. "A lot of the young people in the neighborhood really enjoy it. It's been kind of a community item."