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Navy kiss statue being removed from San Diego waterfront

"Unconditional Surrender" on the San Diego waterfront.The 25-foot sculpture "Unconditional Surrender," a popular tourist attraction since its arrival in 2007, is being removed from the San Diego waterfront under an arrangement between the Santa Monica-based foundation which owns the sculpture and the Unified Port District of San Diego.

Workers are scheduled to have the 6,000-pound sculpture dismantled by Thursday afternoon so it can be shipped to New Jersey.

But a fundraising drive by officials at the nearby aircraft carrier museum Midway has gathered enough money to commission a replacement that will also be modeled after the iconic photograph taken in Times Square as Americans celebrated the end of World War II.

In eight weeks, the Midway Foundation reached the $1-million target. Seven individuals each pledged $100,000, including philanthropist and financier Malin Burnham and San Diego newspaper owner Douglas Manchester. Organizers hope to have the replacement ready by the end of the year.


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--Tony Perry in San Diego

Photo: "Unconditional Surrender" on the San Diego waterfront. Credit: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times

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