ROGERS PARK — A partially decomposed, severed deer head with antlers was found Monday stuck on a bamboo stake — resembling a sort of morbid scarecrow — at Loyola Park Beach.
"I was up there on the sand and I thought, 'What in the heck is that? Is that a real deer head?' " said Steve Browne, who had been out on a morning walk Monday when he made the discovery. "I went out to it, and it sure was."
Red cloth with a painted hand with five fingers and two thumbs was attached to the display. A symbol was painted on the hand.
Browne said he thought it "was pretty neat," but also "kinda creepy." So he posted his photos online with the hope someone might know what it means.
Elizabeth Ruiz, a Rogers Park-based spiritual therapist and tarot card reader, had a few ideas when asked Monday about the creepy "art."
She said the deer head and antlers could represent a native warrior of Central America, meant to fend off "bad vibes" and scare away "people with bad influence."
She said the red color could represent power or fire.
"It makes for a good photo," said Jeremy Laurent, 26, who was visiting Chicago from his native France and came across the deer head stuck in the ice shelf along Lake Michigan.
Laurent was with a travel companion, Josefine Leonhardt, 24, of Germany.
"It's not taxidermy," she said after a closer look. "It's a bit scary."
Jessica Maxey-Faulkner, a Chicago Park District spokeswoman, said Monday afternoon the severed head would be removed from the beach.
"And no, we have never seen anything like this," she said.
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