The controversial statue, officially called “Triumph of Civic Virtue,” which stirred debate for the last few years, was hoisted from its pedestal on Queens Boulevard just before 5 p.m. on Saturday, December 15 as bystanders looked on — many of whom were saddened by the action.
It has been moved to Green-Wood Cemetery in Brooklyn effectively leaving the borough on loan to the cemetery. Many have opposed the move for several reasons, particularly though for its artistic value and the manner in which it was moved.
A week before the move, which took close to 10 hours of preparation, Councilmembers Peter Vallone and Elizabeth Crowley joined with Community Board 9 and Triumph of Civic Virtue to rally against the move. The coalition alleged that those opposed had purposely been stymied from attending a November 13 hearing on the move to Green-Wood.
And just days before, Community Board 9 voted to oppose the planned move, also citing that the aged statue was a work of public art, given to Queens more than 70 years ago and should be preserved as such. The statue should have been restored and kept in Queens, said Community Board 9 chair Andrea Crawford.