"A portrait is a picture in which there is just a tiny little something not quite right about the mouth." -- John Singer Sargent

Monday, December 20, 2021

Jack Brickhouse

Jack Brickhouse

This 2000 bust of Jack Brickhouse by Jerry McKenna stands in Pioneer Court at 419 Michigan Avenue near the Chicago River bridge in Chicago, Illinois. See HEY, HEY: BRICKHOUSE FINALLY GETS OWN STATUE,The Chicago Tribune Sept. 15, 2000. Pioneer Court marks the location of Jean Baptiste Point du Sable's homestead.

© Jerry McKenna
San Antonio, Tx.- 2000

There's no need to introduce John Beasley “Jack” Brickhouse here; the inscriptions on the base of the statue do that thoroughly. Chicago Public Art tells us a little more about the monument.
Sponsored by the American Brain Tumor Association, the memorial sits just south of WGN Radio studios where Brickhouse spent many years on the air. In 2009, due to temperature changes and the vibrations of Michigan Avenue, the statue fell into disrepair and was taken down. The Chicago Baseball Museum, upon request of Brickhouse’s widow, helped raise the funds to fix the piece and return it to its location in Pioneer Court.

WGN Radio

That's a Baseball Media Guide in his hand.

The front face of the plinth says:

Jack Brickhouse.
Hall Of Fame Broadcaster.

and has this image of  Wrigley Field, Soldier Field, Chicago Stadium, and Comiskey Park and Brickhouse's famous catch-words: “Hey-Hey.” 

The plinth-face on Brickhouse's proper right, covers awards and highlights.

Inducted into Media Wing of Baseball Hall of Fame,
Cooperstown, N.Y. in 1983, and 13 other Halls
of Fame throughout the nation.
Broadcasted for Chicago Cubs - 40 years;
Chicago White Sox - 27 years;
Chicago Bears - 24 years;
1st TV voice for Chicago Bulls.
1962 - play by play announcer for 1st satellite
telecast. Recipient of Local and International
awards for Pope Paul VI papal audience.
EXCLUSIVE broadcast interviews - 6 Presidents.
4 Honorary Doctorates. 2 Autobiographical
best sellers: "Thanks for Listening" and
"A Man for All Seasons".
On the rear we find an outline of Brickhouse's broadcasting career.

Broadcasting career - one of versatility.
Covered everything from man-on-the-street
interviews world-wide, dance bands soap
operas, disasters, parades, to reading Sunday
funnies to kids. Heard nationally describing
4 World Series, 5 All-Star baseball games,
3 NFL championship games, 9 "Bowl" games,
4 East-West football games, World Series
of golf, wrestling for 9 years, several Golden
Glove tournaments and professional title fights.
Covered numerous Republican and Democratic
conventions, F.D.R.'s 1945 inauguration and
Winston Churchill's funeral.

followed by this plaque identifying the sculptor Jerry Mckenna.

Bust of Jack Brickhouse
Jerry McKenna, 2000
City of Chicago
Richard M. Daley, Mayor
Public Art Collection

And on the remaining side we get further details of Brickhouse's Career. 

1934 - Entered broadcasting profession in
hometown of Peoria - age 18, becoming
youngest sports announcer in the nation.
1946 - Broadcasted for New York Giants -
one season. 1948 - first voice on WGN-TV.
1979 - Reached milestone of 5,000
broadcasts for WGN Radio and TV.
No baseball broadcaster WILL EVER
televise as many games as Brickhouse.
Continued broadcasting until his
retirement from the booth - 1981.

And a plaque by the The American Brain Tumor Association.

Brain tumors do not discriminate.
Jack Brickhouse was one of thousands who
battled a brain tumor. The disease is complex;
effective treatment is challenging.
exists to eliminate brain tumors through
 research and education.

The stone pavings around the memorial are inscribed with the names of donors, These stones in front of the marker, identify the monument and add a note from Patricia Brickhouse.

Jack Brickhouse Memorial
Dedicated September 14, 2000

A Loving Tribute
To My Partner
In Life
From 1980 to 1998

In 2016 The Brickhouse Monument shared the plaza with Abraham Lincoln. (“Return Visit” by Seward Johnson)

In 2011, the spot was held by Marilyn Monroe also by Seward Johnson. 

Photo by Barry Swackhamer

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