Sweetness Or Sour? Debate Swirls Over Payton Statue
By Marcus Gilmer in Miscellaneous on Sep 16, 2009 4:40PM
The family of Walter Payton wants to put up a statue honoring the Bears legend, but they've been met with resistance from the Chicago Park District. It seems the Park District is a-okay with a statue of Payton going up - it is, after all, being donated by the Payton family - but has adopted a hard line of not allowing the statue to go up in the one place it makes sense: Soldier Field.
According to a Payton family spokeswoman, park district officials explained that Soldier Field and the area surrounding it is to be preserved strictly as a memorial to war veterans. There also is concern a Payton statue outside of Soldier Field might diminish the stature of other former Bears Hall of Famers.
The family said the team has been "cooperative" with their efforts in trying to get the statue placed outside of the stadium. There are hopes to have it all sorted out in time for a weekend of special events around November 7th to commemorate the 10th anniversary of Paytons death (November 1, 1999).