Sept. 5, 2008
AUBURN - Auburn's women's athletics was artistically captured with the "Wings of Triumph" statue, which was unveiled Friday adjacent to the Earlon and Betty McWhorter Center for Women's Athletics.
"Wings of Triumph represents past, current and future female Auburn student-athletes," Athletics Director Jay Jacobs said. "The women of the past were pioneers that have put Auburn women's athletics on the forefront."
The statue was made possible by a gift from Earlon and Betty McWhorter. The McWhorter's bestowed a gift of $2.5 million to Auburn in 1997 to make the Earlon and Betty McWhorter Center for Athletics possible and it is now home to the Tiger softball and gymnastics programs.
"We want to thank Earlon and Betty McWhorter," Auburn President Dr. Jay Gouge said. "They have been tremendous to Auburn and our athletic program. Today is a special day in Auburn history"
A.J. Mills, a member of the gymnastics team and current president of the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, spoke how the statue is not for a single individual, but for Auburn's female athletes as a whole.
"This statue does not represent just one person, but all of Auburn's female athletes, past, present and future," Mills said. "All of the people before us paved a path of a winning attitude. They have paved a path of Auburn pride."
Created by international sculptor Branko Medenica, "Wings of Triumph" represents female athletes at Auburn, those who laid the foundation for the program and for those who will be Tigers on the playing field in the future.
Mounted atop a five foot base clad in jade pearl granite, the "Wings of Triumph" statue is constructed of silicon bronze with a stainless steel armature and stands over 10 feet tall. There are 400 individual feathers that have been crafted in the wings.
"We have been dreaming about this for a long time," Earlon McWhorter said following the unveiling. "I'm surprised and thrilled so many people came out today. It's an exciting day for us."