Medora to Unveil Life-Size Theodore Roosevelt Statue

(MEDORA, ND) – The Theodore Roosevelt Medora Foundation(TRMF) announced today that a bronze, life-size statue of Theodore Roosevelt will be unveiled in downtown Medora on Friday, October 27, to honor President Roosevelt, who was born on the same day in 1858.


A Press Conference and Statue Unveiling will be held:

  • Friday, October 27
  • 11:30am MDT
  • Downtown Medora, in front of the Old Town Hall Theater


Members of the public and media are invited to join the event to see the unveiling, hear remarks, and take photos with the life-size statue. 

Speakers at the press conference will include:
  • TRMF Board of Directors Chairman, Ed Schafer
  • Donor group spokesperson, Tom Schock
  • Statue sculptor, John Lopez.


The statue portrays Roosevelt as the leader of the Rough Riders, the famous volunteer cavalry regiment he raised from Harvard friends and Dakota Territory cowboys, who he led in battle during the Spanish-American war. The approximately 5’9” life-size statue will be set at ground level, giving visitors to Medora a unique ability to literally stand next to Theodore Roosevelt.



The Roosevelt statue will remain permanently in downtown Medora, in front of the newly-renovated Old Town Hall Theater, a place Roosevelt visited as a Vice Presidential candidate in 1900 and famously declared, “Here the romance of my life began.”


TRMF supporter, Tom Schock, worked closely with TRMF and the artist to bring this Roosevelt statue to Medora, and the generous contributions by seven total donors made the idea a reality. The generous donors on this project include:


  • Dennis Wolf, MD, and family
  • Rich & Joanne Becker
  • Jim & Twylah Blotsky
  • Tom & Maria Ovenson Schock
  • Ardis Afseth
  • Dean Schlosser
  • Bill Sorensen


The statue was sculpted by South Dakota artist, John Lopez, whose sculpted metal works range from hybrid metal sculpture inspired by the plains, it’s people, and wildlife, to bronze pieces honoring Presidents.



About John Lopez – Artist and Welded Art Sculptor 
Sculptor John Lopez is a product of a place. His people’s ranches are scattered along the Grand River in northwestern South Dakota—not far from where Sitting Bull was born and died on the Standing Rock Indian Reservation. Not far from where thousands of buffalo were killed during the westward expansion of settlers and gold miners. In the bone yards of Tyrannosaurus rex and grizzly bears. Since farmers and ranchers populated this chunk of reservation land, real cowboys have been roping and branding and sheering and haying and harvesting.


John’s own forte lies in gentling colts and perfecting their bloodlines—and he started his celebration of them by sculpting in clay. Capturing every nuance, every muscle, in this land where business is still conducted over a cup of coffee and “neighboring” is a way of life. Somehow that way of life—where times seems to have stood still—has seen the transition from horsepower to vehicles. The rusted carcasses of discarded equipment stand testament to generations of labor. And the man who knows blood lines has picked through them, choosing the elements of the past—the actual implements that plowed the soil or cut the grain or dug the dinosaur—and created the curve of a jaw, the twitch of a tail, the power of a shoulder.
As a sculptor his work spans a number of topical areas including the subjects of his surroundings – stallions and antelope, bison and steers – to creatures known only by their fossils and the Presidents of our past.
Learn more about John and see his work at:

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