Donors’ Gifts Enhance Campus

Spike is not the only bulldog on campus these days.

Visitors passing through the mall will now see a new bronze bulldog sculpture on the library patio. Through generous gifts from alumni and friends, donated specifically for a bulldog sculpture, the piece was commissioned with Crandall Sculpture and Design.

The artist, Brandon Crandall of Brashear, Mo., worked to create something that would be both visually stunning and instill pride in every generation of bulldogs. The nearly six-month project included art sketches, feedback from a bulldog breeder and Crandall’s signature process of building sculpture with foam, clay and countless hours of design before sending the mold to the foundry for bronzing and completion.

After a quick turnaround from Eligius Bronze of Kansas City, Mo., the finished bulldog was installed in time for Homecoming 2018 and was unveiled at the dedication of the Roger J. Johnson Patio. During the Sesquicentennial Plaza campaign, private gifts were raised for the naming rights of the space, located to the west of Pickler Memorial. The patio was named in honor of Johnson, a longtime employee who retired from the Physical Plant in 2017 after 29 years of service.

In another part of campus, with the support of many Truman parents, a two-year fundraising project was completed in the summer. Red Barn Park is now home to a new pavilion.

Creating a pavilion in Red Barn had been a topic of discussion for many years, and thanks to the Truman parents who donated more than $70,000 to the project, the pavilion became a reality in the fall. The new structure provides a covered location for many different uses such as hosting picnics, an outdoor classroom or meeting destination. It will also be useful for event registrations and outdoor movies.

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