Artist removes Paterno’s halo

Paterno's halo, painted after his death, is now gone. (AP photo)

Paterno's halo, painted after his death, is now gone. (AP photo)

Joe Paterno, it turns out, was no saint, so the artist who painted a mural of the veteran coach on a State College street has removed the halo from above Paterno’s head.

Michael Pilato, said he decided the halo had to go after the release of a report by former FBI director Louis Freeh, which was sharply critical of Paterno and other Penn State officials for their handling of the child abuse scandal involving former assistant coach Jerry Sandusky, reported Onward State, an independent student news blog.

He had added the halo to the painting after Paterno’s death in January.

“Sadly, today is one of the hardest things that I’ve done,” Pilato was quoted by Onward State. “I had to … I got rid of his halo.”

Pilato decided to keep a blue ribbon he painted on Paterno’s jacket symbolizing support for child abuse victims.

The university, meanwhile, has received pressure to remove the statue of the late coach that stands outside Beaver Stadium.

Officials said Sunday trustees and administrators haven’t decided what to do with the sculpture.

52 comments Add your comment

REALIST

July 16th, 2012
11:20 am

This makes me so sick….so very sick. WHAT IS JOE P GUILTY OF? I say burn Sandusky, that man should pay for what he has done for sure, possibly by putting him with a 7′ 2″ cell mate and tell the cell mate that any noise out of that cell will be ignored. But Joe P, the man that did so much good for Notre Dame, the man that didn’t bolt for a bigger contract or for fame and fortunate in the Pro’s no he stayed with the organization he loved. And now the poor man is dead, they say from cancer but a bit too coincidental that it happened 2 months after all of this broke out.

Sandusky should be crucified for the wrongs he has done.
Joe P’s legacy should not be tarnished by the wrong doing of another. He is a legend, and one that should be celebrated for years to come.

Shady

July 16th, 2012
11:24 am

I’m claiming first because the above post should not count.

Shady

July 16th, 2012
11:26 am

He’s a legend all right, but for the wrong reasons.

Stacey

July 16th, 2012
11:28 am

Just curious….so if it was YOUR son that he KNEW was being raped by this sick individual, you would still feel the same?

BG

July 16th, 2012
11:29 am

Im with you on that one Shady..the first post is non-existent. As far as Im concerned he is just as much to blame for not coming forward and helping with the cover up

Scott

July 16th, 2012
11:30 am

REALIST, what did he do for Notre Dame????????

Reggie

July 16th, 2012
11:36 am

REALIST,

Your post misses the point…Joe Paterno allowed Sandusky to continually perpetrate these heinous acts on minors for years, without stepping in and ending it – as he could have and should have. He is not guilty of rape, but he IS guilty of allowing rape to happen under his watch. This tarnishes his legacy and, sadly, requires us to rewrite his history to reflect both the good that he has done but also the evil which he allowed.

Oh, and he did it for Penn State – not Notre Dame…

The Law

July 16th, 2012
11:38 am

@Realist

Guilty by Association: refers to the attribution of guilt without any proof on individuals solely for the reason that those whom they associate with are guilty.

Curious George

July 16th, 2012
11:47 am

Were the horns holding the halo in place?

Curious George

July 16th, 2012
11:48 am

Would Joe Paterno still be the Head Football Coach (and still be alive) if he were employed by Notre Dame?

Curzen

July 16th, 2012
11:50 am

As he is according to the report guilty of covering Sandusky’s trail and enabling more children to be raped I guess he died at the right time to get off easy. Tear the statue down.

Hear no Evil, See no Evil, Speak no Evil

July 16th, 2012
11:50 am

He should have painted his glasses black while he was at it. Scum Pa.

Big C

July 16th, 2012
11:50 am

REALIST. What reality are you living in?! Joe Paterno had a duty to handle this mess! He chose to pass the buck, just like everyone else at Penn State did. No, I don’t think his legacy should be tarnished. But HELL NO! He was no saint or angel.

Hide Yo Wife, Hide Yo Kids

July 16th, 2012
11:52 am

Exacxtly what we should expect from somebody calling himself “Realist”. BTW, the blue ribbon on Joe Pa’s jacket is a slap in the face to those victims.

Former Victim

July 16th, 2012
11:53 am

@REALIST – you may consider yourself a realist but you are not, apparently, someone interested in the facts. What Joe P did, first of all, was done at Penn State – not Notre Dame.

Joe’s crime was, in the estimation of many, as heinous as Sandusky’s, and for some of us, even more unforgivable. Joe committed the crime of silence and the complicity in a coverup that allowed Sandusky to continue to have access to children and the facilities at the institution where the abuses continued to occur for years. They (the powers that were told of Sandusky’s at-that-point-alleged crimes, including Joe P) chose not to report anything to the police, even informing Sandusky of the allegations, further permitting his behavior and almost assuredly causing him to be more guarded about his behavior and where and how he committed the molestations.

Joe and the others chose to shield the school by shielding Sandusky from “scandal” over any desire to protect young children from a pedophile. Well, football is just a game – entertainment – and NOT a shrine to anything. Joe and the others, including Sandusky, used that game to benefit themselves personally, professionally and financially, all the while doing it on the backs of at least 10 innocent children. We may never know how many children Sandusky abused but I guarantee that it is more than 10. The information in Freeh’s report of how Joe P tried to shield his legacy after the crimes became public is further proof that Joe P was anything but a saint, angel or even at heart a good person. Selfserving is to me more accurate.

Joe was good at coaching football. Doesn’t make him a saint. Sandusky was very good at being a pedophile, but Joe was so concerned about his own image that he chose not to report Sandusky to the authorities or even asked for the police to get involved. Penn State is culpable by allowing such morally bankrupt people to run the school.

So REALIST, get real!

Curious George

July 16th, 2012
11:55 am

Would anyone be happier to see Coach Paterno stripped of all his football wins since the late 1990s due to this scandal than Bobby Bowden, currently the 2nd-WINNINGEST College Football Coach of all time, right behind JoePa?

Former Victim

July 16th, 2012
12:12 pm

I would certainly think it appropriate to strip Joe of his wins starting at the time he learned of Sandusky’s crimes and then chose to do nothing about it. Yes. He does not deserve any acolades from then on.

MR164

July 16th, 2012
12:13 pm

@REALIST You’re an idiot

That is all

Peter

July 16th, 2012
12:22 pm

I guess if you know a young boy has been sodomized in your house, and say nothing….you are still not guilty of anything.

If you know a young boy has been sodomized and then lie about the knowledge, and thwart the investigation you did nothing wrong.

Please tell me this is not what Joe Pa did ?

Sure he was a good guy for awhile and then build a program….. but how does one know he was not always the way he turned out, he just hid all very well, and for a very long time ?

Peter

July 16th, 2012
12:24 pm

The real deal is Joe Pa would be facing some major charges, and perhaps even land in jail, had he not passed away.

Joe pa is guilty, and if he went to jail because of his crimes…….would the picture and statue still be there at Penn State ?

Peter

July 16th, 2012
12:25 pm

REALIST is just another Penn State grad, who is fighting a dumb battle.

[...] Update: Joe Paterno’s halo being physically removed. Read more. [...]

ATL Guy

July 16th, 2012
12:37 pm

Octomom > Realist

ATL Guy

July 16th, 2012
12:38 pm

JarJar Binks > Realist

Simple Jack

July 16th, 2012
12:44 pm

Realist, put down the pipe for goodness sake. Jeeeeez, Notre Dame? Get a clue!! All he’s done? Get a grip! He let a pedophile ruin lives!!! Anything he did short of walking on water and breaking up fishes and loafs of bread for the needy should count as NOTHING!! God forbid that ANYONE would turn their head and ignore such a monster as Sandusky. According to the just-released report, eight children were abused because JoePa did not report him or stop him. THE STATUE OF JOEPA HAS TO COME DOWN and his name and face should be scrubbed from the history of that school.

Jill

July 16th, 2012
12:57 pm

So, the artist removed the halo….good. But left the blue ribbon which symbolizes support for child abuse victims, when he knew that children were being abused and did nothing?!

Chuck Clausen

July 16th, 2012
1:01 pm

80 year old plus people for the most part are not mentally and emotionally equips to handle complex emotional problems. The Joe Paterno I knew from the 1970’s would have called his key people in to a room discussed the facts as they knew them create a plan to fill in the holes of their knowledge base and acted – part of the process would have discussion with victims – and part would have been confrontation with Sandusky with the verifiable facts.

Former Victim

July 16th, 2012
1:08 pm

@ Chuck Clausen, Joe P was not in his 80’s when he first learned of the allegations. Per the Freeh report,

“After Mr. Curley consulted with Mr. Paterno, however, they changed the plan and decided not to make a report to the authorities. Their failure to protect the February 9, 2001 child victim, or make attempts to identify him, created a dangerous situation for other unknown, unsuspecting young boys who were lured to the Penn State campus and football games by Sandusky and victimized repeatedly by him.”

If Joe was cognizant enough to make that call, he was complicit and should not be excused for age.

RichestoRags

July 16th, 2012
1:12 pm

I think they should be remove.. this man knowingly allowed this preditor to continue preying on young boys for what.. chapionship rings and money… disgusting.. who’s supposed to admire him…

snicho

July 16th, 2012
1:18 pm

Throw their football program to the curb..shut it down! Take away their accredidation. And melt down JoPa’s statue..sell it off and give the money to the victims!

Angela

July 16th, 2012
1:26 pm

I agree; that ribbon needed to be painted over as well. You know what? Just scrub the mural altogether, raze the statue and say a prayer for the victims. JoePa won football games…that shouldn’t have warranted a halo to begin with. But good for the artist for having a conscience and removing it.

I have no sympathy for Paterno or any of those other scumbags. I’m all for not casting stones, but when it comes to violating children, the line is drawn. Guilt is probably what killed him.

Angela

July 16th, 2012
1:30 pm

By the way, my grandmother is 85 and probably in better shape mentally and physically than everyone else in the family. Age isn’t an automatic indication of weakness or the inability to have good judgment. If anything, it makes people more compassionate. That’s no excuse.

taboo

July 16th, 2012
1:41 pm

Heck! JoePa was probably doing the same thing with & to those boys. How else could he just let these terrible things happen to those kids? Animals! May he and Sandusky rot away in hell!

taboo

July 16th, 2012
1:42 pm

@ Angela. Amen!!

taboo

July 16th, 2012
1:43 pm

@ Snicho. Great idea!!! Melt that statue down!!!

maria

July 16th, 2012
2:09 pm

REALIST – what a whack job!
Does anyone know what happened to (if anything) McQueary (SP???) – the guy that witnessed
the abuse and did, pretty much, nothing, except go to his daddy? That, to me, is so hard to believe.

Artie

July 16th, 2012
2:33 pm

Good ol’ Pedophile State University!!!!!

Artie

July 16th, 2012
2:35 pm

Joe Pa should have followed up if he indeed pass the info along to his superiors.

[...] to the Atlanta Journal Constitution, Pilato added the halo after Paterno’s death in January, but decided to remove it after the [...]

nomaj

July 16th, 2012
3:36 pm

The artist insults the children devastated by the decades long child abuse going on at the Penn State athletic department by adding a child abuse awareness blue ribbon to the portrait of this Paterno fellow, who, as it turns out, was certainly aware of abuse, alright, but chose not to prevent it.

Instead of a blue ribbon, the artist should paint a crying defenseless orphan boy being raped by a adult authority figure, naked except for a Penn State cap, on one lapel, and a dollar sign on the other.

Peter

July 16th, 2012
6:23 pm

The Joe Paterno I knew from the 1970’s would have called his key people in to a room discussed the facts as they knew them create a plan to fill in the holes of their knowledge base and acted

SURE. maybe you never knew Joe Paterno…… If he would allow the guy to go to bowl games with little boys within the last few years….. Why would he have been different before ?

Peter

July 16th, 2012
6:27 pm

THIS must be the joke of the entire Blog……..

Pilato decided to keep a blue ribbon he painted on Paterno’s jacket symbolizing support for child abuse victims.

Really ?????? Joe Pa allowed this to continue at Penn State no less…… He is as Guilty as Sanduski !

Jake

July 16th, 2012
8:02 pm

An early death was too good to Paterno. Instead of spending his remaining time, helping the victims he helped to create, and making amends, he was busy trying to make his family even richer, sucking more money out of Penn State, taking the last “moments” in his life to renegotiate a rich early exit to his contract. What irony: his wife will have use of the very gym, Sandusky raped a child in. Jay Paterno, you could have helped save your Dad’s legacy, but your continual denials are only going to bring down “your own house”, now You need to be sorry for what your father did and you don’t even realize it yet. Well you have proved the apple doesn’t fall from the tree.

Jake

July 16th, 2012
8:11 pm

Chuck Clausen,

JoePa was sharp enough to negotiate a shrewd 5.5M early exit to his contract with Penn State (is there nothing that college would do not do for this man?) Disgusting this happened after a lot of the facts were already out.

Note to self, Joe: “more children involved?”; “…Pandora’s box…”

How did you live with yourself?

G-Man

July 16th, 2012
8:13 pm

NOMAJ – Thank you! I’ve been saying that same thing all day. The artist, Pilato, is still a little off the mark here. Sure, he took the halo down, that’s great! But putting the blue ribbon up is still not the right thing to do. Paterno did not act as an advocate for children’s rights or safety against evil men like Sandusky. He cared only about winning and protecting his own legacy which is now tarnished forever. Pilato should have removed Paterno from his seat and left it vacant like he did Sandusky’s. Sadly, so many people are hung up on what they percieve as a nice old man that made one mistake that should be overlooked because he coached some great football games. These people need to open their eyes. Regardless of the life a person leads, nothing entitles them to look the other way when children are being harmed. I think this E-mail is one of the first times I truly looked at Paterno’s name… PATER is latin for FATHER. That is the root of his name, and those children Sandusky hurt needed a protecting father figure to sabe them, and Joe Pa instead, saved himself and his football machine. shame on you Joe Paterno.

joderito

July 16th, 2012
10:31 pm

He should never have had a halo on his head anyway. Is being a good football coach really worthy of sainthood?

G-Man

July 16th, 2012
11:07 pm

Great point JODERITO! I love football, but when it’s all said and done – it’s just a game. Nobody on the field is healing the sick or raising the dead.

DCarlisle

July 17th, 2012
4:28 am

Okay, so the artist painted over the halo because apparently Paterno didn’t do more to stop Sandusky’s sexual abuse of children. But then the artist painted a blue ribbon upon Paterno’s jacket, to symbolize his commitment to victims of child abuse?

Huh? Which one is it? Is Paterno an advocate for child abuse victims or isn’t he?

Before Paterno’s death, it was made public that the investigation revealed he did not do everything within his power to prevent Sandusky from sexually abusing children. The infamous coach lost his job because of those very findings …remember? But then months later, after Paterno died, this artist still chose to paint a halo above his head? Why? I find myself wondering if the artist painted the halo knowing he would eventually be given the opportunity to remove it…a much publicized opportunity no doubt. Perhaps all this painting, repainting, and altering of the mural is nothing more than publicity stunt meant to spotlight the artist? To get his name in the news…again? If so, how sad.

Is the artist indirectly benefiting from Sandusky’s sex crimes?

I read an article that claimed the artist was losing sleep over all this. Hmm…or maybe he can’t sleep because he’s anxiously contemplating the next alteration of the mural? I also read in the article that the artist may paint a blindfold over the eyes of University President Spanier…to symbolize how Spanier also didn’t do enough to stop Sandusky’s sexual abuse. So…Paterno gets a pretty blue ribbon but Spanier get’s his eye’s removed? Who made this artist judge and jury? Is this a game to him?

Enough already. I’d like to encourage the artist to paint over the tainted mural entirely, and replace it with something that denotes the courage of Sandusky’s victims.

[...] The Freeh Report that was expelled final week demolished a bequest of conduct manager Joe Paterno, laying out a anathema box of prolonged and unhappy cover adult that authorised Sandusky to abuse children for years after a first accusations. The 4 group directly concerned in a crime all mislaid their jobs. Two have already been charged with perjury, a third is expected to be, and polite and rapist cases involving them and a university competence final for years. Paterno is dead, incompetent to answer for his crimes solely in editorials and art works.  [...]

Aghast

July 17th, 2012
5:11 pm

Amen, DCarlisle, and many others on this thread.

I’m so disgusted, it’s all I can to to keep from driving up there and painting over the damned thing myself.