Roberto Clemente statue and game-used bat unveiled at Louisville Slugger Museum

MLB Hall of Famer Roberto Clemente’s two sons were on hand to witness the event in Louisville, Wednesday.
Published: Aug. 18, 2021 at 1:26 PM EDT
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Visitors of the Louisville Slugger Factory and Museum can now get face to face with one of baseball’s most famous players. Roberto Clemente, a humanitarian as much as he was a baseball player, is now enshrined at the museum with an incredibly detailed statue.

Clemente’s two sons were taken aback by the statue’s unveiling which happened on the day that would have been their father’s 87th birthday.

“To see the details in this was amazing,” said Luis Clemente. “His stare, he was very intense, and they captured that.”

Roberto Clemente’s life was cut short. On December 31, 1972, Clemente had been on his way to Nicaragua to deliver relief supplies after a devastating earthquake. The plane crashed into the Atlantic Ocean after an engine failed on takeoff. None of the five people aboard survived.

Clemente is already enshrined in the Hall of Fame, but now his face and infamous coiled swing will be remembered in Louisville as well. His humanitarianism rarely went unnoticed. Even Louisville’s own Muhammad Ali admired the fellow legend. That’s something Clemente’s sons won’t ever forget.

“I had the honor of hanging out with [Ali], and speaking with him about the respect he had for Dad,” said Roberto Clemente Jr. “and to have him here in Louisville, the Champ’s home, together, is very special... It’s a great birthday present.”

Moving forward, visitors of the museum can hold one of Clemente’s game-used bats.

Also, as part of Wednesday’s ceremony, Louisville Slugger was able to provide 7,000 meals to families in Puerto Rico, Clemente’s home with the help of the organization, Love The Hungry.

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