Frank Gotch Statue unveiling plus artist Rob Schamberger, Mike Chapman, Brad Rheingans and Bill Smith, 1952 Olympic champion (who once beat Dan Hodge as amateurs). in Humboldt, Iowa on July 4th
Posted by flairwhoooooo on June 28, 2012
July 4 – The Frank Gotch Statue unveiling will take place in Bicknell Park in Humboldt, at 1 p.m. The eight-foot bronze statue is the project of a special committee in Humboldt, the hometown of the legendary professional world heavyweight champion (1908-1916).
Join author , wrestling historian, and motivational speaker Mike Chapman who wrote the wonderful books From Gotch to Gable (the University of Iowa Press, 1981) A history of wrestling in the state of Iowa and the entire Untied States, GOTCH: World’s Greatest Wrestler (Hein Publications, 1988) the story of wrestling legend Frank Gotch Frank Gotch: His Life and Legacy (Paladin Press, Boulder, CO, 2008) the book provides an in-depth look at the incredible career of America’s greatest professional wrestler. With a length of 148 pages, it offers 90 photos, many of which have never been published before.and will make a speech about Gotch’s legacy.
Chapman is on the statue committee and will make a speech about Gotch’s legacy.
Chapman also received the MWR Lifetime Achievement Award in the year 2011. For more info click here.
Other guest include
Brad Rheingans competed for North Dakota State University, winning the NCAA title in 1975. He won a gold medal in the 100 kg class at the 1975 Pan-American Games, and a bronze medal at the 1979 World Championships, after placing fourth in 1978. He also qualified for the 1980 Olympic team which did not compete. After 1980, Rheingans turned to professional wrestling, competing for the American Wrestling Association until that group folded in 1991. He also competed in WWF and Japan.
1975 NCAA Division II Champion;
1975 NCAA Division I All-American;
United States Olympic Team Member (2);
USA Senior Greco-Roman Champion (2);
AWA World Tag Team titles w/Ken Patera
Inducted into the George Tragos/Lou Thesz Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2004.
Rheingans also trained numerous professional wrestlers. Some of his well-known students include Vader, John “Bradshaw” Layfield, Brock Lesnar, The Nasty Boys, Jerry Lynn, Tom Zenk, Joe Hennig and Tori
Few wrestlers in the United States have been able to match the accomplishments of Bill Smith, who hails from Council Bluffs.
Smith was an excellent wrestler while at Thomas Jefferson High School in Council Bluffs, finishing second and third at the state wrestling meet. But it was at the collegiate level and beyond that Smith excelled.
While at the Iowa State Teacher’s College, now know as the University of Northern Iowa, in Cedar Falls, Smith was a two-time NCAA champion and a three-time NAAU champion. He was also named as the “Outstanding Wrestler” in the 1951 National AAU Tournament.
His crowning achievement, however, came in the summer of 1952 when he became the only American to win a gold medal in freestyle wrestling at the summer Olympic Games in Helsinki, Finland.
After his wrestling days were over, a teaching and coaching career followed. He coached at Rock Island (Illinois) High School and led the team to a state championship. Smith then went on to coach at Ann Arbor (Michigan) High School and the University of Nebraska before he was named the athletic director and coach of the Olympic Club in San Francisco, California. During the late 1950′s, his AAU teams won three national titles and several of his athletes went on to earn berths in the 1960 and 1964 Olympic team.
He remains in California after coaching at San Jose State, San Francisco State, Pacifica High School and Clayton Valley High School in Concord.
Smith was inducted into the Iowa High School Wrestling Hall of Fame in 1977 and was named to the Des Moines Sunday Register’s Sports Hall of Fame.
Bill Smith was inducted into the Iowa Wrestling Hall of Fame in 1972.
HIGH SCHOOL: Thomas Jefferson High School, Council Bluffs
COLLEGE: Iowa State Teacher’s College
•Two-time NCAA titlest
•Three-time AAU champion
•Gold Medalist at 1952 Olympic Games in Helsinki
•Rock Island (IL) High School
•Ann Arbor (Mich.) High School
•Pacifica (CA) High School
•Clayton Valley (CA) High School
•University of Nebraska
•San Jose State
•San Francisco State
•Olympic Club, San Francisco, CA
•Three AAU National titles
YEAR INDUCTED IOWA HALL OF FAME: 1972
On hand will also be the talented artist, Rob Schamberger, will be showcasing his art at the Humboldt Area Arts Center on July 4th!
Schamberger is from Kansas City and has taken on the fantastic goal of painting every one of professional wrestling’s world champions, including Humboldt’s own Frank Gotch.
Following the 1:00 PM Frank Gotch statue unveiling, at Bicknell Park, everyone is invited to walk across the street to the Art Center (Old Coke Plant) and check out Schamberger’s art.
Do not miss this great event on the fourth of July!!