DETROIT - The statue of the late Ernie Harwell is looking good again.
A worker from a Michigan foundry re-attached a new pair of glasses Tuesday to the white bronze statue of Harwell that stands inside Comerica Park in downtown Detroit. Someone had ripped the original eyeglasses off the statue.
No one knows exactly when they were broken off or who did it, but stadium officials alerted the company behind the work earlier this summer that the glasses were missing, said sculptor Lou Cella of the Fine Art Studio of Rotblatt-Amrany outside Chicago.
"Ernie wore pretty delicate glasses, at least during the age we depicted him," Cella said. "We initially made them as durable as we could. If somebody wants to go all out and rip the things off, they can just do it."
Harwell, a baseball announcing legend, died in May 2010 at the age of 92. Cella met with Harwell while the piece was being created.
"I couldn't say enough good things about him," Cella said.
He said he anticipated "what might go wrong" as he was working on the statue.
"In the case of the glasses, you're making a choice between other ways that are much more durable, but you sacrifice esthetic appeal," he said, adding that it is not unusual for vandals or overzealous fans to break off pieces of statues.
A microphone on a piece in Chicago memorializing Harry Caray also has been broken off.
"There is no way to protect such a thing like this. The only way is to educate the public," said Omri Amrany, co-founder of the Rotblatt-Amrany studio.