The Jacksonville Jaguars today dedicated a bronze bust in memory of Roger Ernest Ferrell, Sr., for whom their practice fields adjacent to ALLTEL Stadium are named.
The 40-pound bronze bust of Ferrell has been mounted on a pedestal between the Ferrell Fields and the scoreboard at the south end of the stadium.
Jaguars chairman and chief executive officer Wayne Weaver was joined by City General Counsel Rick Mullaney and Jaguars Foundation Chair Delores Barr Weaver to dedicate the bust.
Dr. Ernie Ferrell, son of the late Roger Ferrell, and his wife Deon, participated in the dedication ceremony. Dr. Ferrell has been recognized as one of Jacksonville's leading physicians and entrepreneurs. The Ferrell Family is among the community's philanthropic leaders, and they have committed a major gift to the Jaguars Foundation to assist at-risk children in the Jacksonville community.
"I hope that this statue and what it represents will stand here as an inspiration to all of us in our lives and our service to our community," said Wayne Weaver. "The life of Roger Ernest Ferrell Sr. is the story of all that is good in our society. He quietly went about building his American dream, living and working right here in Jacksonville."
A plaque will be placed on the pedestal to read:
Named in Memory of Roger Ferrell
A Man of Honor, Dedicated to God, Family and Community
In Life as in Football, Being Ready to Do Your Best Requires Preparation, Hard Work and Sacrifice"
The Ferrell Fields were named in memory of Roger Ferrell on July 19, 1996, the day the Jaguars opened their first training camp in Jacksonville.
The bronze bust was created by Jerry McKenna, an internationally known sculptor whose work can be found in museums, parks, churches, public buildings, universities, halls of fame and private collections around the world. Among his most famous works are The Lincoln-Douglas Debate, Sir Winston Churchill, Notre Damers Knute Rockne, Frank Leahy and George Gipp, Pro Football Hall of Famers Mel Renfro and Wellington Mara, and Bob Hope.
Roger Ferrell was born in Waycross, Ga. and grew up in Jacksonville. He graduated from Andrew Jackson High School in 1937 and was married the following year to Frances Lucille Ratlieff. After a stint in the Navy and work for a local lumber company, Ferrell took correspondence courses in insurance and real estate from the University of Florida. After 11 years working for The Prudential Insurance Company, Mr. Ferrell opened his own insurance agency in 1961. A Deacon and treasurer in his church, Roger Ferrell taught in the church Sunday school. He and his wife raised three children here in Jacksonville.