PITTSTON -- Many people in Pittston have been waiting for the return of the city's beloved Christopher Columbus statue.
"(It's) actually very exciting to have him back," Ilonka Sammarco of Jenkins Township said. "This is a symbol of Pittston, So we have to have him here."
Back in December, a car crashed into the base of the statue, causing it to fall over. The damage totaled about $68,000. The driver survived the crash.
Over the past eight months, Pittston city leaders have worked to get the statue back. With a new base, the statue now stands about two feet taller than before.
"(To) the Italian-American citizens in the community -- this statue means a lot," Pittston Redevelopment Authority Chairman Mike Lombardo said. "So, to get it back here is very important to celebrate that piece."
Pittston city leaders said it was a goal of theirs to have the statue back in place by the Tomato Festival, which starts on Thursday.
"It was one we weren't sure we were going to meet," Lombardo said. "It got a little dicey a month and a half ago with the insurance wrangling, but we were glad to be able to do that."
Now that the statue is back, community members, including Pittston City Councilman Danny Argo, can't help but stare at it.
"It's just wonderful to have it back," Argo said. "Thank you, Pittston city. Hopefully, it'll be here forever."