Main Street Marion to Dedicate Memorial at Birth Site of James Dean Today

A new monument at the birth site of James Dean at 4th and McClure Streets in Marion, Indiana will be dedicated on today on September 30th to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the actor’ death.

Legendary Rock and Roll personality and bestselling author Pamela Des Barres will host the event and actor Maxwell Caulfield will be one of the several guest speakers scheduled to take part in the dedication. Caulfield has appeared in over 80 films, television and stage productions including Grease 2, Empire Records, The Boys Next Door, Dynasty, and The Colbys.

Main Street Marion’s director Loretta Walker worked closely with James Dean Gallery owner David Loehr developing plans for the tribute that will be an attraction for downtown Marion and a destination for James Dean fans from around the world.

Earlier this year Walker put together a group of people that included Loehr, Halstead Architects, Bowman Construction, and local businessman Jim Sutter. The group worked in conjunction with the Grant County Convention and Visitors Bureau and the Community Foundation of Grant County in finalizing plans to have the memorial constructed.

The park-like setting and monument were designed by David Loehr and will be a lasting tribute to the internationally known Marion native. The focal point of the memorial will be a six-foot tall black granite monument with pictures of Dean etched into the from along with a picture of the Seven Gables Apartment House that stood at the location which Dean was born. On the back of the granite stone there will be a brief bio of the iconic film star.

James Dean was born on February 8, 1931, and was raised by an Aunt and Uncle in Fairmount after his mother died at an early age. Dean graduated from Fairmount High School in 1949 and headed to Hollywood and later New York. He appeared in numerous live Television dramas in the early 1950’s and two Broadway plays before returning to Hollywood to make his three major films, East of Eden, Rebel Without a Cause, and Giant. He tragically died in an automobile accident on a California Highway at age 24 on September 30, 1955.

The dedication ceremony will take place beginning at 5 p.m. with music and guest speakers at 6 p.m.

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