Today@Sam: Statue To Be Dedicated To War Hero, Alumnus Sept. 11

The Sam Houston State University statue that pays homage to two war heroes and an artist will receive its official dedication on Thursday, September 11, 2008.

The ceremony will be held at 11 a.m. between Academic Building I and the Smith-Hutson Business Building. During the event, university president Jim Gaertner will recognize Col. M.B. Etheredge, one person in whose honor the statue of Gen. Sam Houston was given. The statue’s donator, alumnus Ron Mafrige, will also make a few remarks.

The ceremony will also include a presentation of the colors by SHSU’s ROTC and songs performed by the Bearkat Marching Band and will be followed by a reception in the LSC Mall Area.

The statue, a 20-foot replica of the 67-foot statue that stands on Interstate Highway 45 south of Huntsville, was created by sculptor and SHSU alumnus David Adickes, the other person in whose honor the statue was given. Adickes also created the original “Big Sam” for Gen. Sam Houston's 200th birthday anniversary and named it "A Tribute To Courage."

Etheredge, a 1937 graduate of Sam Houston State Teachers College and former SHTC track star, is this country's highest decorated surviving soldier of World War II. In the U. S. Army, Etheredge earned three Silver Stars, two Bronze Stars, and two Purple Hearts for gallantry in action.

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