Saturday, February 18, 2012

Helen Wills Tunnel

Mabel Watson Payne is very fond of a good tunnel and the tunnels at Helen Wills Park claimed a big share of her attention. When I first saw the name Helen Wills on the green swinging wooden signboard at the park, I knew it was familiar. But did not immediately recall that I had myself already featured Helen Wills here. HaigPatigian's marble portrait bust called Helen of California occupies a conspicuous spot in a large California-themed gallery at the De Young Museum, where I took the pictures below only a couple of months ago.

She lived from 1905 to 1998 and was famous for winning over 30 Grand Slam tennis titles in the 1920s and 1930s, becoming "the first American-born woman to achieve international celebrity as an athlete."