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CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- The bronze statue of Hugh McManaway, the Myers Park landmark that was knocked off its pedestal by a motorist last Thursday, was hauled away Tuesday morning by Charlotte city workers.

But the statue will return -- once the city determines who is responsible for paying the bill.

The statue, at the corner of Queens and Providence roads, was damaged by a hit-and-run motorist about 10 p.m. Thursday. Cory Richard Pierce, 34, of Matthews, has been charged in the case.

The statue was propped against the pedestal after the incident and remained there for several days. It was removed Tuesday morning by city workers who said they were hauling it away for repairs, and for the safety of passing motorists at the heavily trafficked intersection.

McManaway lived a few blocks from the intersection and was a familiar figure as he walked in the area for many years. He often directed traffic at the intersection, wearing a yellow raincoat and a hat. He died in 1989, and several Myers Park residents joined with business leader Hugh McColl and the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Arts and Science Council to erect the statue on Dec. 9, 2000.

The cost of the artwork was $65,000.

The statue eventually was deeded to the City of Charlotte as public artwork. That makes repair and replacement a city matter.

A city staffer told The Observer late Monday that the statue eventually will be replaced. It will need repairs, as one arm was damaged. But the staffer, asking not to be identified, said Charlotte officials first want to determine responsibility for the cost of replacing the statue.

Our first option is to have whomever is responsible for knocking down the statue pay for it, the staffer said.

Pierce was charged with driving with a revoked license and hit-and-run causing property damage. City officials are concerned that since his license was revoked, he might not have insurance.

We ll have to determine that first, the city staff member said.

If the motorist responsible in the case is not insured, the money will come from a city fund set up for such occurrences.

Eventually, it will be back, the staffer said.

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