Chief Wapello nears return atop Wapello County Courthouse

Chief Wapello on the ground following the storm

Chief Wapello may soon be making a return to the top of the courthouse that was named after him.

Although progress has been slow, the job of getting Chief Wapello back on top of the Wapello County Courthouse has been assigned to the contractor who performed renovations on the chief upon his initial fall. The contractor will begin his work next week.

The project wil not cost the county anything, as insurance will cover the installation. Precautionary, safety reasons have held back the project, namely the rusty pipe that fastens the chief atop his perch

Wapello County Supervisor Jerry Parker says there's an alternative plan of displaying the the chief outside the courthouse. This plan would take place only if the chief absolutely cannot be placed back on top, but Parker says the public has voiced their opinions and want him back where he belongs.

"We're very receptive to any ideas the public has," said Parker. "But they have told us all along that his place is back on the courthouse where he's been for about 118 years and so that's going to be our intentions."

A storm last June knocked the chief off his perch and he landed on the roof of the Wapello County Courthouse.