BUTTE — Yeah, painting can be tough work, but try painting a 90-foot statue on top of the East Ridge overlooking Butte. Now, that is a tough job—but the Lady needs a new coat.
“Kind of scary, you know, in the lift, moving around in the lift, but something definitely cool, fun, got to have no fear,” said painter Cory Hyndman.
The crew with Fournier Paint and Drywall in Butte volunteered their time to put a new coat of paint on the Our Lady of the Rockies statue, which has not been painted in about 10 years. Brian Fournier’s grandfather put the first coat of paint on the statue just before it was placed on the mountain in 1985.
“I think it’s awesome, it’s such an honor to do this. We donated our labor and painting's been in our family for 60-plus years. I’m a third-generation painter,” said Brian Fournier, owner of Fournier Paint and Drywall.
Weather caused them to delay the painting project for the last two weeks.
“Today it’s still windy but we got to get it done, so we’re just, like, we’re doing it, wind or not,” said Hyndman.
The lift, which was donated by Markovich Construction, tends to sway a bit in the wind.
“It’s not bad once you’re up there and get used to it. I mean, it’s a little bouncy but that’s how all extension lifts are so it’s another day in the office,” said Fournier.
Painter Rich Winters added, “Just look at the statue and figure out what you’re going to paint. Don’t look down and go to work.”
The true thrill for the crew is knowing they contributed to the preservation of a beloved Butte landmark.
“It’s really cool to like give back to our community, born and raised out of Butte, so for us to come up and donate our time is something really cool to do,” said Hyndman.