A fixture in downtown Malone was whisked away in three pieces and will return in the spring with a fresh look.

The fountain in the center of Veterans Memorial Park at the corner of Elm and Main streets was disassembled by a Village of Malone Department of Public Works crew Wednesday and taken to Jason Ellis and his team at Ellis Automotive Group on Main Street, where it is in for some special care.

"She's going for a facelift," Craig Brand said as he waited for the DPW truck with a small trailer to be backed into place to haul away the largest of the three parts of the structure.

The other two sections, including the female figure holding a large vessel above her head, waited nearby for their trailer ride.

The facelift for the cast-iron fountain will include a fresh coat of paint, said Brand, who was tackling the removal job with Ralph Jesmer, Jeff Hutchins and Scott Rivers.

They said they do not expect to reinstall the fountain until spring.

THE MAYOR'S LIST

According to an article in the Malone Farmer from May 3, 1922, the fountain was the idea of Samuel J. Flanagan, one of the brothers who owned and operated the former Hotel Flanagan.

He proposed that money be raised for a fountain to be erected in memory of the American service members who died in World War I.

Mayor Brent Stewart said getting the fountain repainted was one of the projects that kept getting bumped back in favor of more pressing issues.

But with the removal complete and the paint job ready to start shortly, it is another task he can take off his to-do list before he leaves office on Dec. 5.

"It's one of those things I've wanted to get done, but I just hadn't gotten to it," Stewart said. "We shut the water down for the winter, and now they can make repairs and paint it, and it will be fresh and ready for the spring."

SPECIALIZED PAINT

Ellis said this is the second time his business has spruced up the fountain.

The first was about 15 years ago, when the State Department of Transportation reconfigured Main Street through downtown Malone and Veterans Park was redesigned.

He said the fountain looked terrible for its new surroundings and was given a fresh coat of paint.

His business is doing the job, estimated at between $1,500 to $2,000, for free.

The fountain will again be spruced up using a specialized paint that is much more durable than vehicle paint, Ellis said.

"It lasted 10 years, so it must be pretty good."

Email Denise A. Raymo at: draymo@pressrepublican.com

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