Reggie “The Crusher” Lisowski is known as “The Man Who Made Milwaukee Famous.” Over the course of his 40-year professional wrestling career, the South Milwaukee native and World War II vet was the pride of a region, an influence to untold numbers of aspiring wrestlers, and a WCW Hall of Famer with a heft of title belts to his name. If Chris Smith has it his way, The Crusher (who died in 2005) will also be honored with a statue in his hometown.

Smith—an Oak Creek resident and wrestling fan—recently launched a campaign to pay tribute to Lisowski by building a full-size bronze statue in downtown South Milwaukee in 2019. In only a couple of months, ‘Da Crusher Statue Memorial Fund has raised more than $33,000 of its $40,000 goal. Days after a Crusher event at The Vanguard, Smith joined Tyler Maas at Milwaukee Record headquarters to discuss his motivation for this endeavor, The Crusher’s local significance, statue specifics, and upcoming events to continue to make his dream a reality.

This episode is brought to you by Surly Brewing, a Minnesota-based brewery and the official beer of On The Record. Try Surly’s new reduced-gluten Hopshifter IPA now. Music used in this episode comes courtesy of Piles (“Blue Glue”) and Novas (“The Crusher”). Subscribe to On The Record via iTunes or Stitcher (for free!).