Trail Of Governors Adds Likenesses Of Elrod, Gubburd And Daugaard

(KCCR) — The Trail of Governors in Pierre grew by three new additions Friday. Bronze renderings of South Dakota’s 5th Governor Samuel Elrod, 22nd Governor Archie Gubburd and 32nd Governor Dennis Daugaard were unveiling before a State Capitol Rotunda full of family, dignitaries and former staffers. Sculptor James Van Nuys completed the Elrod piece…

“I focused on this career as a lawyer and pictured him with his law books.  That seems to be the most significant part of his life.”
Elrod is standing next to a table with his hand atop a stack of law books. Lee Leuning and Sherri Treeby worked on the Gubburd statue, which depicts the 22nd Governor staring at a mock –up of a Minuteman missile…

“Part of it was the efforts by the Department of Defense to put up a very good defense and that involved South Dakota.  And that involved putting together almost 200 Minuteman Missile sites in western South Dakota.  And do it in two years, that’s unbelievable.  And of course they turned to our Governor, because they knew nothing about western South Dakota.  It had a lot of dirt cowboy trails and they turned it into some of the… very best gravel roads in South Dakota are located West River.  And the Interstate System got all the money it needed, no thanks to him.”
James Maher added to his contributions to the Trail by sculpting Daugaard who is holding a shovel while making the International Sign Language sign for “I love you”…

“Then it was time to try the head above the shoulders.  When I did that, I started to hear it…it was the Governor’s voice.  It said, “Do the sign!  It will be ok!”  And something about his smiling face made to work for me…made me believe, so I hope you guys believe too.”
Daugaard’s Lieutenant Governor Matt Michels was Master of Ceremonies for the event. Governor Kristi Noem and Pierre Mayor Steve Harding also address onlookers. Each 72-thousand dollar statue was paid for through private donations.