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Jerry West statue unveiling: Teary-eyed West shares moment with family

February 17, 2011 |  6:45 pm

West1 Jerry West and his family just gathered on stage as he pulled the gold rope that unveiled the statue of him here at Star Plaza at Staples Center, as purple and gold streamers exploded from a nearby cannon.

The statue depicts him mid-stride, dribbling down the court, ball in his left hand, wearing his No. 44 gold Lakers jersey with those short shorts, raggy white socks, low-top sneakers and his face in a kind of half-grin, as if he sees an open path to the basket.

"To think of a little boy who had an opportunity to live his dream, and maybe to exceed it, that is very special," West said, holding back tears.

-- Baxter Holmes

Photo: Jerry West, far left, looks at the statue representing him during his playing days after it was unveiled at Staples Center on Thursday. Credit: Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times