Franco Harris, George Washington statues to return to Pittsburgh airport |

Franco Harris, George Washington statues to return to Pittsburgh airport

JoAnne Klimovich Harrop
Pittsburgh International Airport
The statues of Pittsburgh Steelers legend Franco Harris and founding father George Washington were removed from their spots at the Pittsburgh International Airport in preparation for a $1.1 billion makeover.
Courtesy Franco Harris
In a photo posted to Instagram, Pittsburgh Steelers legend Franco Harris recreates his iconic catch at the Pittsburgh International Airport on March 30. The airport removed a statue of Harris, as well as that of President George Washington, for cleaning and refurbishing
A statue of Pittsburgh Steelers legend Franco Harris making his “Immaculate Reception” catch on display at Senator John Heinz History Center in 2008.

Franco Harris and George Washington soon will be back where they belong.

The iconic statues of Steelers star player Harris and the first U.S. president are returning to their homes inside the Pittsburgh International Airport.

The statues will be unveiled during a news conference Thursday.

The statues were taken to the Sen. John Heinz History Center in in March for conservation work and cleaning. Harris, whose legendary “Immaculate Reception” in a 1972 playoff game is memorialized in his statue, will be part of the event. He tweeted about the statue when it went missing.

The return date was chosen because it is close to the Steelers’ opening home game on Sunday, when they host the Seattle Seahawks.

Airport employees will be celebrating a “Steelers Day” as part of the festivities, wearing Pittsburgh Steelers gear and colors.

Local travelers often declare, “I know I’m home when I see George and Franco.” The locale is also a popular selfie spot. The statues are owned by the history center and are on loan to the airport.

JoAnne Klimovich Harrop is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact JoAnne at 412-320-7889, [email protected] or via Twitter .

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