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Churchill Busted Again

New Bust Unveiled at California’s Chapman University

MAT19L–R: Richard Stack, Juan Rosillo, James L. Doti, David Freeman

Chapman University has dedicated a new bust of Sir Winston Churchill on its campus in Orange, California. The latest addition to a large and growing collection of busts spread around the school depicting giants of history, the Churchill bust came about as a result of a gift by the Hugh and Hazel Darling Foundation to benefit the university’s law library, which is now named for the Darlings. Whenever a gift of an endowed chair is made, Chapman University allows the donor to name an individual whose bronze sculpture will be placed on campus to inspire the students. In this instance, Darling Foundation Trustee Richard Stack asked that the bronze bust be of Churchill, who was a hero to Hugh and Hazel Darling.

The Churchill bust created by sculptor Juan Rosillo, who was present for the unveiling, appropriately faces a bust by the same artist of Margaret Thatcher at Chapman’s Global Citizens Plaza. Lady Thatcher’s papers are among the many important collections housed at the Churchill Archives Centre at Cambridge University. Chapman’s expanding collection of bronze busts, university president James L. Doti noted, “is a wonderful way to present heroes to our current and future students—as well as quotations from these people who have had such a significant impact on history.” The quotation from Churchill on the bust’s pedestal is one that relates to vision and to the importance of having a focus. It is taken from Churchill’s first wartime address as prime minister:

“You ask, what is our aim? I can answer in one word: It is victory, victory at all costs, victory in spite of all terror, victory however long and hard the road may be; for without victory, there is no survival.”

The Churchill Centre was represented at the ceremony by David Freeman, editor of the Chartwell Bulletin, who read out the following letter at the request of Randolph Churchill:

“On behalf of the entire Churchill family, may I congratulate Chapman University on the honour you do today to my great-grandfather Sir Winston Churchill. We are very pleased to learn that this bust of Sir Winston is to become a new and permanent feature of your beautiful campus and will join the busts of other eminent worthies in your Global Citizens Plaza. Let this be another symbol of the continuing good relations between the British and American people—an idea that my great-grandfather (himself an Anglo-American union with a British father and American mother) so passionately supported throughout his life.”

Chapman University has previous connections to Sir Winston having twice hosted his official biographer Sir Martin Gilbert. Informed about the new bust, Sir Martin’s widow Lady Gilbert remarked: “Chapman University is a very special place. I was there with Martin in 2003 (though Martin also spoke there in 2001). How wonderful that they have honoured Churchill now in this way!”

The bulldog countenance of Sir Winston now joins the rest of the bronze pantheon on the Chapman campus, a reminder of unquenchable determination in the midst of great peril, an inspiration to all who pass by.

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