Jackie Robinson Steals Home Again

Donors to the Jackie Robinson statue Thomas and Alba Tull, left, Hall of Fame Broadcaster and the voice of the Dodgers baseball for 67 years, Vin Scully, and Rachel Robinson the wife of Jackie Robinson and Sharon Robinson the daughter of Jackie Robinson pose for pictures during the Dedication of the Jackie Robinson Statue at America\'s Stadium.The Dedication of the Jackie Robinson Statue at America\'s Stadium.Jackie Robinson Statue Unveiled at Rose Bowl One hundred members of the Robinson family pose for pictures with the Jackie Robinson Statue.Mayor of Pasadena Terry Tornek sits with local dignitaries.Vin Scully the Hall of Fame Broadcaster and the voice of the Dodgers baseball for 67 years, left, sits with Pasadena City Council Member Tyron Hampton.The Pasadena City College band perform during the Dedication of the Jackie Robinson Statue at America\'s Stadium.Jackie Robinson Statue Unveiled at Rose BowlRachel Robinson the wife of Jackie Robinson, left, and Sharon Robinson the daughter of Jackie Robinson.Rachel Robinson the wife of Jackie Robinson, left, and Sharon Robinson the daughter of Jackie Robinson. Renowned artist Brian Hanlon designed and sculpted the commemorative statue.Victor Gordo RBOC President and Pasadena City Council Member.Dodger fans pose with the Jackie Robinson statue.Jackie Robinson Statue Unveiled at Rose BowlVin Scully the Hall of Fame Broadcaster and the voice of the Dodgers baseball for 67 years is all smiles during the dedication ceremony.A plaque with history of Jackie Robinson is part of the Jackie Robinson statue.

Story by EDDIE RIVERA | Photography by JAMES CARBONE

6:42 pm | November 29, 2017


As legendary former Dodger broadcaster Vin Scully told a gathered audience in front of Gate A at the Rose Bowl Wednesday afternoon, Pasadena’s legend, Jackie Robinson, successfully stole home 19 times in his major league baseball career. Later, Pasadena Councilmember Tyron Hampton, said, “Make that 20. He stole home again today.”

And how big a day was it? Every student, teacher and staffer at Cleveland Elementary, Robinson’s alma mater, cut school early to participate in the unveiling.

Robinson was honored by his home stadium for 13 games, and his hometown,  as the Legacy Foundation, the private non-profit fundraising arm of the Rose Bowl Stadium, formally unveiled and dedicated its first ever commemorative statue, honoring the late Jackie Robinson.

The statue celebrates Jackie Robinson’s contributions to Pasadena, and depicts Robinson in a Pasadena Junior College (now PCC) football uniform, wearing number “55.”

“It all began right here in the center of the universe, Pasadena, California,” said Councilmember Victor Gordo, as he opened the afternoon ceremony under brilliant blue skies.

“We’re honoring not just an athlete, but a great American,”said Gordo.

Scully also spoke of Robinson’s fearless nature, but also of a man who went out of his way to seek calm in tense situations. When, in a ceremony in 1975, a baseball tossed for an autograph at Robinson by an eager fan, hit Robinson on the shoulder, Robinson calmly asked for the ball, signed it and had it returned to the fan, as Dodger personnel were ready to toss the fan out of the park.

“But make no mistake,” said Scully. “Dodger manager Leo Durocher would tell opposing managers, ‘Don’t wake him up,’” knowing that Robinson was a far more dangerous and skillful player when angered.

The first player to break the color barrier in Major League Baseball, Robinson was a role model for many generations. A graduate of nearby John Muir High School, he lettered in four sports at Pasadena City College and successfully competed on the Rose Bowl Stadium field as a gridiron star in 1937 and 1938. Robinson’s prolific athletic career continued at UCLA, where he lettered in four
varsity sports, including football. UCLA Football has called the Rose Bowl Stadium its home field since 1982.

The statue was generously gifted by Alba and Thomas Tull’s Tull Family Foundation (TFF) as part of the Stadium’s INSPIRE centennial capital campaign, which will support the preservation, protection and enhancement of the Rose Bowl Stadium as a National Historic Landmark.

TFF’s Thomas Tull serves as Founding Chairman of the Board of Legendary Entertainment and produced 42, the Jackie Robinson film biopic, released in 2013. Tull is a partner in the Pittsburgh Steelers ownership group and serves on its Board of Directors, and is also on the board of the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. Alba Tull serves on the board of the Jackie Robinson
Foundation.

“Jackie Robinson is a true American legend,” said the Tulls, “and we are so honored to be able to recognize his legacy in a town and for the team that meant so much to him and the Robinson family.”

Renowned artist Brian Hanlon, of Hanlon Sculpture Studios in Toms River, New Jersey, designed and sculpted the commemorative statue, located outside of the Stadium’s Gate A, the main gate, on the northern-most tip of the Parkway extension amidst a redesigned rose garden.

Jackie and brother Mack Robinson are also honored with busts in Centennial Plaza, across from City Hall.