Chuck Berry statue unveiled in St. Louis

July 31, 2011 at 12:08 AM
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ST. LOUIS, July 31 (UPI) -- Rock 'n' roll icon Chuck Berry told the crowd on hand for the unveiling of a statue in his honor in St. Louis it was "an honor just to have you walk by."

The 8-feet-tall bronze statue in the city's Delmar Loop, sculpted by Harry Weber, will be permanently located in a landscaped, tree-lined plaza in the Delmar Loop, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.

"All of you wonderful people, it's an honor to just have you walk by in this hot sun," Berry said to the hundreds of spectators who gathered around him during the dedication.

The statue resulted from the efforts of Joe Edwards, Blueberry Hill owner and founder of the St. Louis Walk of Fame, and Charlie Brennan of KMOX-AM, who headed the campaign to raise money for the $100,000 project.

Shortly before the dedication, Great Rivers Greenway held a ribbon cutting ceremony to introduce the Centennial Greenway, which will be a $1.8 million, 20-mile bike and pedestrian pathway, part of which opened Friday and includes the plaza that features the statue.

Other entertainment at the unveiling included performances by the Blues Plus band, the Galilee Missionary Baptist Church Choir and Show-Me Sound Drumline.

"Chuck Berry created a new music expression that inspired generations of young people to find their voice," Weber said. "The statue and Blueberry Hill are bookends to Chuck's 50 years of rock and roll greatness. Thanks, Chuck, for providing the sound track to my youth."

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