HOULTON, Maine — Over the years, Hammond artists Glenn and Diane Hines have created several statues that are on display throughout the state.
The Hineses created the Samantha Smith memorial at the State House in Augusta and the Gen. Joshua Chamberlain memorial in Brewer. They also sculpted a memorial honoring Vietnam War veterans at the Cole Land Transportation Museum in Bangor.
Now, the couple is set to create another Smith statue that will be displayed in Houlton.
During a Town Council meeting last week, Glenn Hines told councilors that a number of people have expressed interest in having a Smith statue in Houlton.
Smith was born in Houlton but later moved to Manchester.
In December 1982, Smith, 10, penned a letter to former Soviet Premier Yuri Andropov asking him why the U.S. and the then-Soviet Union had such a difficult, tense relationship.
Andropov responded, assuring her that his nation wanted world peace.
At Andropov’s invitation, Smith visited the former Soviet Union and became a heroine. In August 1985, a plane carrying Smith and her father crashed, killing all six people aboard.
The Hineses created a bronze statue of Smith releasing a dove, with a bear cub at her feet, which stands in Augusta.
Glenn Hines told councilors that he has made a second casting of the 5-foot-2-inch statue that stands on a 16-inch-high base. He said that officials at Vital Pathways, a community health organization, intend to raise the $45,000 needed for the statue and give it to the town as a gift.
The town will not put any money into the acquisition of the statue.
Councilors were thrilled with the idea and agreed to take ownership of the statue.
The fundraising is set to begin immediately.