Heavy lifters Roger Harris, Chris Nelson, Ernest Tallio, and Vance Snow lower a 400-pound stone carving into its temporary home at the Nuxalk Administration Building. Stone carver Ron Teska, a resident of the Appalachian Mounains of West Virginia, USA, personally delivered the sculpture last summer from his home as a gift to the Nuxalk Nation after an earlier visit to the Valley.
On a follow-up visit last month, he arranged for the carving to be displayed at the Nuxalk site. His gift is out of respect for both First Nations and endangered species. Teska intends to relocate in Bella Coola because of the environmental destruction caused by fracking for gas in his beloved Appalachians. The limestone obtained for the eagle carving came from a salvaged monetary bank in Cameron, West Virginia.
“The bald eagle, endangered in many places, is revered and protected in Bella Coola. In this carving, I speak as the eagle giving thanks for being allowed to maintain its role in the web of life,” says Teska. “As the Nuxalk Nation reveres the eagle and other species thriving in their region, I offer the gift of this eagle as one small gesture of thanks for reinforcing my hope that other endangered species the world over will revive and flourish. This hand carving is in limestone salvaged from a bank in Cameron, West Virginia.”
On another note, Chris Nelson, whose Nuxalk responsibilities include development of fledgling aboriginal tourism opportunities, was recently elected as a Director to the Board of Bella Coola Valley Tourism where he will provide a liaison to the Nuxalk Nation.