Amidst the bickering of whether your 2010-11 Boston Celtics are nearing the end of their road in the NBA Playoffs, comes some terrific news announced via press release by the Boston Celtics this afternoon: At long last, the immortal number 6, will be getting a statue in Beantown. Here’s a portion of the team’s press release:
The Boston Celtics Shamrock Foundation in partnership with the newly formed Bill Russell Legacy Committee announced today they will erect a statue of Bill Russell in the city of Boston designed by a local artist. In commemoration of Russell’s accomplishments as the greatest champion in the history of professional sports, as a national leader in human rights and as a dedicated advocate for youth mentoring, the Bill Russell Legacy Project will also develop a Mentoring Grant program in Russell’s name to ensure his passion is carried on by expanding the resources for mentoring programs in the city of Boston.
“We are honored to play a role in paying tribute to such an extraordinary athlete, leader and legacy,” Boston Celtics Managing Partner/Co-owner and President of the Shamrock Foundation Stephen Pagliuca said. “Bill Russell will forever be remembered in Boston, and it’s fitting that the ultimate benefactors of his legacy will be future generations of our beloved city’s youth.”
“I am uncomfortable with honors such as this but my years as Captain of the Boston Celtics were the proudest moments of my career,” Boston Celtics Legend Bill Russell said. “Mayor Menino’s Boston has proven to be a City that embraces the diverse contributions of all its people and neighborhoods. I am thankful to the Celtics and all the contributors for the effort to create such a wonderful Mentoring program.”
Truly great news for C’s fans and a well-deserved and extremely overdue honor for Mr. Russell himself. A man who also deserves a good deal of kudos is WEEI’s Paul Flannery whose article on the lack of a statue last year, in Boston Magazine, which brought the issue back to the forefront of issues for both the team and the city. Luckily, the problem has now been corrected, in no small part thanks to Flannery.