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Boy freed after becoming trapped in Hilton Head sculpture; unveiling postponed

Jacob Andersen, 7, of Bluffton, became stuck in a sculpture at Shelter Cove Community Park on Aug. 1, 2015. Hilton Head Fire & Rescue firefighters were able to free his knee after about an hour.
Jacob Andersen, 7, of Bluffton, became stuck in a sculpture at Shelter Cove Community Park on Aug. 1, 2015. Hilton Head Fire & Rescue firefighters were able to free his knee after about an hour. Submitted photo

Firefighters had to extricate a 7-year-old boy from a new piece of public art in a Hilton Head Island park Saturday three days before the sculpture was to be officially unveiled.

Kelly Andersen and her family were having dinner at Poseidon around 7:30 p.m. when her son, Jacob, his sister and her nephew went to play across the street in Shelter Cove Community Park.

A few minutes later, two of the children ran back to report that Jacob had fallen in between the two spirals of the new sculpture Carocol, which was recently installed at the park, Andersen said.

Jacob was climbing the statue when he fell, wedging his knee between the two spirals.

Andersen and her family tried to pick him up and out of the sculpture, but when they were unable to pull him free, they called the Hilton Head Island Fire & Rescue Division for help.

"We can laugh about it now, but at the time, it was quite scary," Kelly Andersen said.

Jacob was worried and began screaming as the firefighters tried to remove him, Andersen said. They were prepared to use saws to cut the sculpture to remove him, she said.

Using a surgical lubricant, firefighters were able to slide his knee out of the sculpture, Fire & Rescue spokeswoman Joheida Fister said. The boy was uninjured, she said.

"They were so patient and so kind," Andersen said of the firefighers. "They were just wonderful."

The statue, by John Clement, was to be unveiled Tuesday morning in a ceremony at 9:30 a.m., but that ceremony has been canceled, according to a news release from Community Foundation of the Lowcountry. No reason was given for the cancellation, but a new ceremony will be scheduled, the release said.

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