Gannon University to Install Golden Knight Statue at Gannon Field

Knight StatuePosted: September 16, 2013

A new statue representing Gannon University will be installed at the entrance of Gannon Field on Sassafras St. on Sept. 18 and dedicated during Homecoming weekend on Oct. 4. The 8-foot, 800-pound Golden Knight statue sculpted by Jon Hair is made possible by a gift from Irwin Belk, the retired executive of Belk Stores, the largest privately owned department store company in America. The Gannon University Class of 2013 also partnered in the funding of the project.

Media are encouraged to capture footage of the statue's installation on Sept. 18 from 10-11 a.m. Jon Hair will be available for interviews during the installment, as well as Angela Coustillac, Gannon's 2013 Student Government Association (SGA) president.

Gannon students, alumni and faculty and staff, as well as the public, are encouraged to attend a dedication ceremony on Oct. 4 from 3-4 p.m. Gannon University President Keith Taylor, Ph.D.; Luke King, current SGA president; The Rev. Michael Kesicki, Associate Vice President of University Mission and Ministry; and Coustillac will provide remarks.

The Golden Knight was first mentioned as Gannon's nickname in 1945 when basketball player and accounting major Dick Buseck, Gannon Class of 1946, wrote an article in the Gannon Mansion referring to the "Knights around Gannon." The University selected the Golden Knight as its mascot because the Knight is "Always faithful, generous, brave and honorable."

Belk, of Charlotte, N.C., is a patron of the arts and has commissioned numerous sculptures for educational institutions across the country.

Hair, who began is sculpting career in 2000, has fulfilled more than 80 major public art commissions, including projects for U.S. Olympic Committee, The U.S. Air Force Academy, The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences and 30 American colleges. Hair has won six national and international competitions and has sculpted portraits of celebrities such as movie and television icon Dick Van Dyke and media mogul Ted Turner.