GOOGLE IMAGES THE PEACHLAND LEGION What was intended as a friendly rivalry between the Summerland Legion and the Peachland Legion ended badly. A bell, on display at the Peachland Legion, was taken by a member of the Summerland Legion.

Legion bell prank hits sour note

Anger erupts after Summerland Legion member removes bell from Peachland Legion

What was intended as a friendly prank by a Summerland Legion member at the Peachland Legion ended up a much more serious matter.

Rex Putney, a 24-year-old bartender at the Summerland Legion, was at the Peachland Legion for drinks recently when he noticed a bell on display in the Peachland building.

Putney thought it would be a good prank to take the bell and leave a note, inviting Peachland Legion members to the Summerland Legion to recover the bell.

He took the bell, left a note at the table and also posted a note on the Peachland Legion’s Facebook page.

At the time, he thought it would result in a good-natured rivalry between the two branches.

However, at 5 p.m. that afternoon, the tone changed.

A Peachland Legion executive member called the Summerland Legion, demanding the bell be returned immediately. Putney drove back to Peachland, returned the bell and apologized to the Peachland Legion president.

John Dorn, a member of the Summerland Legion executive, said returning the bell did not go well for Putney.

“They frog-marched him out of the legion and put the boots to him.”

Putney added that the Peachland Legion president told him he was now banned for life from the branch.

“It was a huge failure. I made the Naughty List,” Putney said, reflecting on the incident. “If I had known this was going to come out of it, I wouldn’t have done it in the first place.”

Then, when he left the Peachland Legion building, he said he was assaulted by a large man in a Santa suit.

“This was such a huge overreaction,” Putney said. “It was quite upsetting.”

Dorn is puzzled by the response from the Peachland Legion.

“For whatever reason, the Peachland Legion members got upset with it, and it escalated from there,” he said. “Why an innocent prank would escalate to that level, I have no idea.”

However, Barry Hewer, manager of the Peachland Legion, said the incident was not a prank.

He said there was no note left when the bell was taken, and as a result, the Legion staff treated the incident as a theft.

The bell, 15 centimetres wide at the base, is displayed from a 1.75-metre stand in the building.

“The bell was donated to us by the family of a deceased member,” he said. It had been on display at the branch for at least four years.

Staff at the Peachland Legion looked at security video to determine who had taken the bell.

“He [Putney] tried to pass the whole thing off as a prank,” Hewer said. “If we had been notified ahead of time, it would have been totally different.”

The bell is now back in its place at the Peachland Legion and the two branches are trying to put the incident behind them.

“It’s all settled now,” Dorn said.

Just Posted

WATCH: ‘Stubborn’ fire destroys Big White Ski Resort chalet

The building, which lit up in flames around 2 a.m., was an infamous spot to Big White locals

Warriors looking for Teddy, hoping for win

West Kelowna hosts their annual Teddy Bear Toss fundraiser Saturday night

Price for one-bedroom rentals in Kelowna jumped 10.8% from October to November

Out of 34 Canadian cities, report said Kelowna had highest monthly rent increase

Rockets drop second straight, conclude 6-game road trip Saturday in Moose Jaw

Kelowna fell short against the Regina Pats 4-3 Friday night

Province covers medical costs for Kelowna boy with spinal muscular atrophy

Spinal taps for Rumi Green’s spinal muscular atrophy treatment cost $120,000 each

VIDEO: Success of wildlife corridors in Banff National Park has advocates wanting more

Demand for more highway protection escalated after seven elk were killed by a semi-trailer near Canmore

Old Christmas card has ties to Summerland agriculture

Card was sent by former director of Summerland Research Station

Sharks beat Canucks 4-2 to snap 6-game skid

Vancouver visits Vegas on Sunday

Fans sing Canadian anthem after sound system breaks at BMW IBSF World Cup

The Canadians in attendance made sure their team and flag were honoured on the podium

Frosty will have to pay rent to stay on Okanagan sidewalk next Christmas

Vernon Teach and Learn allowed to keep Frosty up, but will need a permit come January 1

Prince George RCMP use bait packages to catch porch pirates over the holidays

First-in-Canada program with Amazon looks to combat parcel theft

Conservation officers on the hunt for North Okanagan moose poachers

Officers execute search warrant Friday morning, investigation continues

UPDATE: Highway 1 reopens after vehicle incident near Boston Bar

Initial reports of a jack-knifed semi truck had closed both directions of the highway

Kootnekoff: Accommodating religious celebrations

Employers must be mindful that not everyone celebrates holidays which are days off

Most Read