UCLA Bruin legend Bill Walton gets statue at San Diego Park

Article published at: May 15, 2016 Article author:
UCLA Bruin legend Bill Walton gets statue at San Diego Park
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A life-size bronze sculpture of renowned San Diego sportsman Bill Walton commemorating his lifelong love of cycling was unveiled Saturday, May 14 at Ski Beach Park in Mission Bay. Right after the statue was unveiled, Walton led a 30-mile bike race through Mission Bay to benefit military veterans suffering from PTSD.

The Grateful Dead, they’re my best friends. Their message of hope, peace, love, teamwork, creativity, imagination, celebration, the dance, the vision, the purpose, the passion, all the things I believe in make me the luckiest Deadhead in the world.

- Bill Walton

Bill Walton UCLA Basketball

Bill Walton UCLA Basketball

The bronze sculptor who created the monument, Alison Brown, took precise measurements of his shoes, Walton’s bike, and other personal things. Each item was carefully reproduced in the finished work, a life-size, exceptionally detailed replica of the UCLA Bruins & San Diego Clippers legend.

‘In clay, every fingerprint, every detail created in the sculpture is transferred into bronze. When the sculpture is ultimately cast, the finished monument reflects every tiny detail in bronze,’ said Brown.

I’ve had 36 orthopedic operations, have two fused ankles, my knees, hands and wrists don’t work, I now have a fused spine, other than that, everything is great.

- Bill Walton

UCLA Bruin Legend Bill Walton gets statue at San Diego park

Walton led the UCLA Bruins to national championships in the early 1970s before playing for San Diego Clippers, the Portland Trail Blazers, and Boston Celtics and joining the NBA. Walton won two NBA championships and was named the NBA valuable player. He was named as one of the NBA’s 50 Greatest Players ever and was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame and the Oregon Sports Hall of Fame in 1993.

UCLA Bruin legend Bill Walton gets statue at San Diego Park

I’ve always felt that the Dead’s music was written for me, to me and about me. Thanks to their music, I’m a different person than I was yesterday. I can walk again, I’m pain-free, and I don’t have to take any medication.

- Bill Walton

About the Author: Jim Stroesser

Jim Stroesser has amassed 38 years of experience in global consumer branding across the sports, fashion, and entertainment industries. Starting his career as a tech rep, he ascended to CEO roles with some of the world's leading brands. As the Co-Founder and CEO of CALI Strong Inc., a direct-to-consumer sports brand based in San Diego, CA, Jim has led the company in producing premium apparel, footwear, equipment, and accessories.

His tenure as Owner/Partner at Converse is particularly noteworthy. Jim was pivotal in reviving the brand from bankruptcy in 2001, elevating its value from $120 million to $285 million, and playing a crucial role in its $305 million sale to Nike in 2003, marking one of the century's significant mergers and acquisitions.

Beyond Converse, Jim has held senior management positions at renowned companies such as Nike, Quiksilver, Oakley, LA Gear, Pony, and Adio. He is also actively involved in several boards of directors positions, including SDSI, led by Chairman Bill Walton, which focuses on mentoring companies and assisting in capital raising efforts.

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