Pat Head Summitt Legacy Park

The Pat Head Summitt Legacy Park at Clarksville’s Cumberland RiverWalk COMING SPRING 2016.

Pat Summitt Cumberland Riverwalk

Where the Legend Was Born,
Pat, as a teenager, showing her prize-winning cattle

Pat, as a teenager, showing her prize-winning cattle


Where Inspiration Awaits

As does any child, Pat Head dreamed. She dreamed with typical youthful wonder of the world around her, the fun of play, the love of family and the joy of sport. However, as a child, she may never have dreamed of where life – and basketball – would ultimately lead her.

Born in 1952, Pat’s early years were rooted on the family farm in southern Montgomery County. Her world was within her sight and most days were consumed with school and the shared responsibilities of being part of a working farm family.

Because no high school athletic programs in Montgomery County included girls basketball at that time, Pat attended Cheatham County High School, providing her the opportunity to play competitive basketball and launching what would become a celebrated sports career. Pat went on to play at the University of Tennessee-Martin. She became co-captain of the first United States women’s national basketball team at the 1976 Summer Olympics where her team won the silver medal. In 1984 she coached the US Olympic women’s basketball team and won the gold medal. Pat became the first US Olympian to medal both as an athlete and as a coach.

From 1974 – 2012, Pat coached the Tennessee Lady Vols basketball team, winning eight NCAA national championships. She is the only coach in the history of the NCAA to have won 1,038 victories, making her the winningest coach in both men and women’s basketball.

In 2011, Pat publicly announced her diagnosis of early onset Alzheimer’s, and the university named her Coach Emeritus. Later that year, she founded the Pat Summitt Foundation Fund, with proceeds going toward cutting-edge research against the disease.

Pat_Olympics_320x218Pat’s honors and acknowledgements throughout her lifetime number in the hundreds, including the Presidential Medal of Freedom. She has also co-authored three books in her career: Reach for the Summitt, a motivational book and part biography; Raise the Roof, about the Lady Vols’ 1997-98 undefeated and NCAA-championship winning season; and Sum It Up, about her life, including living with Alzheimer’s disease.

A “Hometown Tribute” to Honor Pat’s Legacy

Undeniably, Pat Head Summitt is an international legend in the world of athletics, coaching and motivational speaking. It is truly fitting that her hometown pay homage to her incredible life and career. Building the Pat Head Summitt Legacy Park will create an inspirational focal point for visitors of all ages and interests. In particular, it will engage youth with a message of life-time values and encouragement to “shoot for the stars.”

The Pat Head Summitt Legacy Park at Clarksville’s Cumberland RiverWalk will be a place of honor — and inspiration. Designed as a micro-park near the confluence of the Cumberland and Red rivers, the setting will prominently feature a larger-than-life size bronze statue of Pat Head Summitt surrounded by five chairs, depicting a classic coaching moment. A sculptural interpretation of a basketball goal will complement the Summitt statue. Additionally, a series of wall-mounted panels will trace Summitt’s Montgomery County origins to her rise as one of the winningest coaches in collegiate sports. Together, all of these components will present an inspiring tribute to the legendary University of Tennessee women’s basketball coach and Montgomery County native.

The selected site is ideal as activities, festivals and events at the RiverWalk currently attract more than 250,000 visitors year-round. Additionally, building the Pat Head Summitt Legacy Park at this location creates a unique opportunity to “bookend” an existing tribute to another iconic local female athlete — 1960 Olympic gold-medalist, Wilma Rudolph. The Wilma Rudolph Pavilion and statue anchor the southern end of the RiverWalk at Clarksville Marina.

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Year-round activities at Clarksville’s Cumberland RiverWalk make the site for the Legacy Park ideal.

Contact

Mr. Richard V. Stevens, Chairman
Pat Head Summitt Project Committee
The Leaf-Chronicle
200 Commerce Street
Clarksville, TN 37040
931-245-0220

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