In the Sept. 5 edition of The Rockport Pilot it was reported that funds were needed to make the final $9,777.12 payment to Red Star Studio’s Joe Barrington, the sculptor selected to build the new Blue Crab.
Barrington’s Blue Crab costs $135,000.
Ruth Walston, 92, of Rockport, after reading that article, decided to cover the final amount needed, making a $10,000 donation to Keep Aransas County Beautiful (KACB), the organization spearheading the fundraising effort.
“I’m just so happy that I saw this and was able to do it,” said Walston.
“She made contact with us and said, ‘I want to see that Blue Crab built before I die,’” said KACB President D’Ann Williams.
KACB Vice President, John Aquilino met with Walston and ended up visiting for a couple of hours.
“They are from the same neck of the woods and she has been isolated for far too long (due to the pandemic),” said Williams.
Walston’s 61-year-old son, George Appleton, died four years ago from injuries he received when he accidentally fell out of his boat in his garage.
“He loved the Rockport Blue Crab,” said Walston.
She said her family always enjoyed crabbing, after they moved to Rockport from Maryland.
“Since I was 20 years old I’ve had crab meat in the freezer,” said Walston. “We even had little contraptions set up so we could have soft shell crabs.”
Williams said Walston asked that the following memorial be placed near the Blue Crab when it’s completed:
“By Ruth Walston in loving memory of her son George Frederick Appleton who truly loved the Rockport Blue Crab and her daughter Christina Stephens.”
KACB officials gave Walston documentation showing that her donation was the one that provided the final funds needed.
Williams said a little more than $7,000 is still needed for ancillary items.
To help raise all remaining funds, KACB is planning a silent auction (date to be determined), and selling Memorial Bricks.
One can purchase a Memorial Brick in two sizes. They will be placed as a pathway to and around the Blue Crab.
A 4” x 8” memorial brick costs $65.
An 8” x 8” memorial brick costs $125.
To make a donation or purchase a brick visit kacbtx.org.