Anderson community pays tribute to ’hometown hero’ Chadwick Boseman

Anderson community pays tribute to ’hometown hero’ Chadwick Boseman
FILE - In this Sunday, Nov. 24, 2019 file photo, Chadwick Boseman poses in the press room at the American Music Awards at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles. Actor Chadwick Boseman, who played Black icons Jackie Robinson and James Brown before finding fame as the regal Black Panther in the Marvel cinematic universe, has died of cancer. His representative says Boseman died Friday, Aug. 28, 2020 in Los Angeles after a four-year battle with colon cancer. He was 43. (Source: Jordan Strauss)

ANDERSON, S.C. (WYFF/WCSC) - The Anderson community is coming together to honor and pay tribute to Anderson native and hometown hero Chadwick Boseman.

Boseman, best known for his role as “The Black Panther” in a number of Marvel Movies, passed away Friday after a four-year battle with colon cancer. Boseman was born and raised in Anderson and would continuously give back to the community throughout his career.

The City of Anderson is hosting a tribute event in memory of Chadwick Boseman this Thursday at 7 p.m. at the Anderson Civic Center. Mayor Terence Roberts is expected to attend the event, which will also include a prayer service and a showing of Marvel’s “The Black Panther.”

“He was able to reach out not only to our community, but he was a worldwide figure,” said Roberts. “For us to be able to say that he was a native son, that grew up in our community with the support of people in our community, through church and schools, that says a lot about our community.”

Anderson University Student DeAndre Weaver started a petition to remove the Confederate Monument in downtown Anderson and replace it with a statue of Boseman. As a theater student, Weaver says Boseman was a role model.

“There’s no reason [the Confederate Monument] should be there anymore,” Weaver said. “If we could replace that with something honoring Mr. Boseman, that would be so positive for the community.”

As of Monday evening, the petition has collected 13,000+ signatures.

Anderson area artist “Joey Within Arts” began to work on a large portrait of Boseman as soon as he heard that the actor had passed away. After two days straight of stretched days and long nights, Joey completed the painting.

“I just felt like Chadwick is one of those people where he came here and he supported Anderson South Carolina, and his face had to be shown,” he said.

His artwork will be displayed on stage this Thursday at the Chadwick Tribute event.

AmStar Cinemas, the same theater Boseman rented out to allow for underprivileged Anderson area children to watch a free screening of Black Panther, says it is currently working on a plan to show old films featuring Boseman, and donate admissions to charity.

“We were in touch with his family, and felt a connection with him here at his local cinema and his local hometown,” AmStar General Manager Patrick Cleveland said.

Gov. Henry McMaster ordered flag lowered to half-staff Sunday as a tribute to the South Carolina native.

McMaster said on Twitter that he was ordering the lowering of the flag “to honor the life, contributions and memory of a truly extraordinary son of South Carolina.”

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