Man fights to keep elephant sculpture

MIAMI - A man who built a 16-foot, 2-ton elephant sculpture in his front yard is fighting to keep it.

Reinol Fernandez, a retired truck driver, built Luiyano the elephant out of rebar, chicken wire, and concrete.

Fernandez said he had the idea since he was a child when he decided he'd one day make an elephant.

Damaris Fernandez, his daughter and an elementary school art teacher, is impressed.

"I think it's great considering that he never went to school for anything like this and this is his first sculpture so I think it's amazing," she said.

The elephant has been in Fernandez's front yard since October. A complaint about it was recently filed.

"Someone called 311," said Damaris Fernandez. "We were told that it had to be removed from the property. We did receive a notice of violation that it is encroaching on the setback."

Damaris Fernandez said their county commissioner is fighting on their behalf, and Miami-Dade County Parks and Coral Park Elementary have expressed interest in taking the sculpture.

"Ms. Nunez, who is the principal there, said that she would love to have it," she said. "She actually came this morning to see it."

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