Shorty’s big adventure: Fisherman statue from Peggys Cove rescued by Dal students

Shorty, the sou’wester-wearing wooden fisherman, has a whale of a tale to share after a group of Dalhousie University students rescued him from a house in Halifax.

Erin O’Connor and friends Roz Brenzel, Kennedy Whelan, Paula Munroe and Julia Farrow heard rumours the statue was at the house and made a plan to take it back for owner Peter Richardson.

“We decided that he wasn’t being treated very nicely, so we went and saved him,” O’Connor told CBC News in a phone interview on Saturday.

“We just put Shorty in the car and we drove away.”

Shorty disappeared from Peggys Cove Boat Tours earlier in the week.

O’Connor said Shorty is in good condition.

“Shorty is safe with us and doing a lot better,” O’Connor said.

The group of students posed for a picture with Shorty before giving him back to Richardson on Saturday.

“On the phone [Richardson] sounded very excited to be reunited with his friend Shorty,” she said.

Peter Richardson with his fisherman statue, Shorty. (Submitted by Peter Richardson)

CBC News spoke with Richardson, the owner of Peggys Cove Boat Tours, ahead of his reunion with Shorty.

He said he got the call at 5 p.m. on Saturday that Shorty was found.

“I received a phone call from someone saying that we have Shorty. That’s all they said was, ‘We have Shorty.’ I said, ‘You have Shorty?’ She said, ‘Yes, we found Shorty and I have him at my apartment right now,'” Richardson said.

Richardson he had been working all day on a missing person sign for Shorty when he got the call.

He said he will increase security at his business and plans to secure Shorty to the ground to hinder future thefts.

So long as Shorty is in decent shape, Richardson said he’s not planning to lay charges.

“We decided today to have a Mrs. Shorty carved so she can stand out in the same spot with her hand out looking for shorty, waiting for him to come back,” Richardson said.

“I’m glad [the students] called and [they’re] giving Shorty back but [they] should have done it two weeks down the road.”

Richard said the motive of the theft isn’t important. He said the silver lining of the incident is that it will attract attention to his business just ahead of the busy tourism season.

“We’re getting him back and that’s all that matters,” Richardson said.

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