“It’s really a beautiful statue,” he said in an interview with the AJC after the unveiling.
Aaron added that he had seen it only once before Wednesday, last year when it was still a work in progress, but offered no suggestions.
“I knew I couldn’t add anything to it,” Aaron said.
Aaron also was touched that about 250 people paid $500 per person or $755 per couple to attend the unveiling event and support the work of his foundation, which encourages and rewards academic achievement and endows four-year college scholarships for deserving youth.
“Just to see all these people come out — you have to remember that I have been out of baseball a long time,” Aaron said. “And to have all these people show up and recognize me as though I was part of their ballclub last year or two years ago…”
The Braves commissioned the statue after a dispute erupted over where Turner Field’s Aaron statue would be located after the team’s move to Cobb County. The original statue will remain downtown as part of Georgia State’s redevelopment of The Ted.
The new statue captures the moment on April 8, 1974, at Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium when Aaron broke Babe Ruth’s long-standing career home-run record.
McGuirk called Aaron “one of the greatest sports legends the world has ever seen,” “a national treasure” and “our home run champion.”
ALSO: See a photo gallery of the Aaron statue unveiling.