On Monday January 18, 2021, a statue of Gamecock women’s basketball star A’ja Wilson was unveiled outside of the Colonial Life Arena in Columbia, South Carolina.
A’ja Wilson, who grew up in Hopkins, South Carolina, had an outstanding career at the University of South Carolina, leading the Gamecocks to their first ever Final Four in 2015 and eventually clenching a NCAA title in 2017.
Wilson has gone on to play in the WNBA after being selected as the No. 1 overall pick in the 2018 WNBA Draft by the Las Vegas Aces.
The significance of the date the statue was unveiled cannot go unnoticed. The unveiling took place on Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day, a date that Wilson herself felt was symbolic for many reasons.
“This is the day we recognize the great Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King [Jr.],” Wilson said. “My grandmother couldn’t even walk on this campus; she had to walk around [it]. If she was here today to see her granddaughter has a statue where she once could not walk … it goes to show how you just plant seeds, and that’s what it’s all about.”
Photo Copyright: ALLEN L SHARPE 2018