Foothills Parkway Welcome Sign Vandalized with Bear Skin and “BLACK LIVES DON’T MATTER”

The Great Smoky Mountain National Park is asking for help after someone vandalized the welcome sign outside the Foothills Parkway.

Someone hung a black bear skin with head attached over the welcome sign with a cardboard sign that read, “FROM HERE TO THE LAKE BLACK LIVES DON’T MATTER.” The vandalism was found at the West Entrance near Walland 7:45 a.m. Saturday.

“We encourage anyone with information to reach out to us as we continue to investigate possible motives for this incident.” said Chief Ranger Lisa Hendy. “We take vandalism incidents seriously in the park, and this particular incident is particularly egregious. It is for this reason we are offering a reward for information.”

Park officials are asking anyone who has information on the vandalism to reach out. a $5,000 reward is being offered in the case.

Respondents are asked to contact investigators through any of the following means:

  • CALL or TEXT the ISB Tip Line at 888-653-0009
  • ONLINE at and click “Submit a Tip”
  • MESSAGE on Facebook @InvestigativeServicesNPS or Twitter @SpecialAgentNPS

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