YOUNGSTOWN — Supporters of the Robinson-Shuba Commemorative Statue on Thursday announced a grant of $25,000 from the John S. and Doris M. Andrews Memorial Fund, a component of the Community Foundation of the Mahoning Valley.
"We are grateful for this generous contribution, which we see as an investment in sustaining the values this statue will celebrate," Ernie Brown, a co-chair of the Robinson-Shuba Commemorative Statue Committee, said in a news release. "The towering statue of Jackie Robinson and George Shuba will remind Mahoning Valley residents and visitors that our community has a proud history of supporting racial equality."
The Community Foundation of the Mahoning Valley partners with individuals, families, businesses and nonprofits to address charitable and philanthropic needs across Mahoning and Trumbull counties that improve the quality of life for all residents.
“The Foundation is proud to play a part in this project, serving as a connector between the Robinson-Shuba committee and the advisers of the Andrews Memorial Fund to help move it one step closer to completion,” said Shari Harrell, president of the Community Foundation. “We hope this statue, once completed, will promote further conversations about race and racial equity in our local community and be a tool to facilitate additional education on the issues we face as a country.”
The larger-than-life bronze statue will portray the 1946 handshake at home plate between Jackie Robinson, the first Black player allowed to compete in mainstream professional baseball, and George Shuba, his white teammate from Youngstown.
Sculptor Marc Mellon recently completed the statue model, which will be used to create a mold for casting the bronze memorial. The statue will be cast at the Bedi-Makky Art Foundry in Brooklyn, N.Y., which is known for crafting the Iwo Jima Memorial near Washington, D.C., and the Charging Bull in the New York financial district.
Dedication of the statue in Wean Park is scheduled for April 18, 2021, the 75th anniversary of the Robinson-Shuba handshake.