‘Compassion’ sculpture recovered from Joplin tornado moved to Mercy Park | KSNF/KODE


JOPLIN, Mo. — A Joplin monument takes a big step forward — rededicated Monday in a ceremony at Mercy Park.

“It’s one of the most impressive sculptures I’ve ever seen,” said Rex Hunt, Mercy Joplin Auxiliary.

Called “Compassion” – a longtime marker that survived the hospital it once graced.

“He looked like he had the weight of the world. And he could hold it all. It almost made you cry,” Hunt said.

This statue now has a new home, moved from the site of the original hospital further north in Mercy Park.

“You know, it’s kinda hidden on the side of the hill. And a lot of people didn’t really know that, so now for our community and our staff, and anyone who knows a little bit of Joplin’s history to review this prominently and know that the story will just be solidified, how far we came as a community and as an organization,” said Jeremy Drinkwitz, president of Mercy Joplin.

A ribbon-cutting ceremony marked the transfer…with applause, prayers and a bit of history. Weeks of planning finally led to the move last month.

“They’ve done a great job and it’s not quite over yet. So we had the parts down or had to be ordered like a lot of things right now. A little late on shipping, but once there it will be granted that it basically goes like the original, and then it will be completely over,” Drinkwitz said.

The purpose of the move was to give the beloved statue more visibility in the park.

“I want people to see it. I want people to be moved by it. That God has compassion for us. And maybe the book can be compassionate to each other. And I hope it inspires our community to do exactly what it is about, to have compassion for each other,” he added.

The “Compassion” statue was first installed at the hospital in 1996 – created by local sculptor Bill Snow as part of a project funded by the St. John’s Auxiliary.

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