ORANGEBURG, S.C. — Former Orangeburg Parks and Recreation Director Marion "Buster" Smith, Jr. is being honored with statue outside of the North Road sports complex.
“He was loved by all because he tried to make parks and rec an important part of Orangeburg," said Mayor Michael Butler.
This is why Butler says the city has accepted a request from the Dick Horne Foundation to build a statue honoring Smith at its recreation complex.
Smith served in his role as director for about 30 years, and passed away in August at the age of 75.
The statue will be placed outside the main entrance of the North Road sports complex, which is one of many projects he helped to advance during his tenure.
“When we had the North Road sports complex, we were able to have nine ball fields, so he was part of that design. I felt it was only more fitting to put his statue up there that he was kind of part of expanding our field, our parks and recreation," said Butler.
Butler says he also pushed forward the development of the city gym and maintained the Edisto Memorial Gardens, which draws millions to the city every year.
Now the city is continuing his legacy through its various sports programs.
“We’re doing the Pickleball over there. We’re getting ready to do that and I think all of this was something Buster probably talked about but never came into fruition during his time. But we’re able to now pick up on that and capitalize off of it."
The statue will take seven months to build.