Did you know: Shaheen memorial statue

Michael Davis, Features Editor

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Did you know…

In the corner of the library on a wooden podium sits a falcon statue, encased in a glass box and practically camouflaged with the background. On the plaque below it, a headline reads “Davenport West High School Shaheen Memorial Statue.” Below the plaque there is a poem titled “Enduring Spirit”, written by West alumni Robert Achenbach, who graduated in 1967.

 

The poem reads:

‘Soar on, young Shaheen

spread your wings with grace;

 

Fallen too soon from the nest,

yet borne on the spirit wind never to cease.

 

Rejoin the falcons of the mother aerie

who’ve flown the heavens’ space;

 

Your brothers and sisters remain,

but only to long for your eternal peace.’

 

The falcon sculpture and the poem together is a dedication to a beloved and dearly departed classmate–Nancy Moore–who passed away unexpectedly Dec. 21, 1966.

“There was so much school spirit and that’s why Nancy’s death struck us hard,” fellow classmate Mary Conger said.

Bonded by a sense of unity, the class of ‘67 rallied together to create something to honor Moore’s passing. The end result was the falcon statue crafted by renowned sculptor Isabel Bloom who sculpted it using special techniques and the poem “Enduring Spirit” by ….

The falcon was also formerly located in the main courtyard upon a granite pillar, however wear and tear over the years made the sculpture unrecognizable. With the appearance having deteriorated over the years, it was eventually moved inside and forgotten about along with the statue’s significance.

However, for the class of ‘67’s fiftieth anniversary, it was retouched and stands proudly overlooking the library.

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