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Granite monument to be unveiled for decorated wrestler Rheingans

APPLETON -- Appleton is honoring favorite son Brad Rheingans on Aug. 6, a Saturday.

A golf tournament and fundraiser will start at 1 p.m. at the Appleton Golf Course.

A monument of the two-time Olympic wrestler will be unveiled late in the afternoon at Shooters Bar and Grill.

Rausch Brothers of Big Stone, S.D., is creating the 6-foot by 5-foot black-granite monument. It will include a photo of Rheingans, a drawing by Wes Hogland and highlights of his high school, college, amateur and pro career.

Rheingans has donated five medals, including the gold medals from the Pan Am games, for placement in the granite.

The monument will be eventually positioned in the Civic Center Park. The monument is sponsored by family and friends, Appleton Project, Martinson Foundation, and the Dawson-Boyd/Lac qui Parle Valley Mat Club.

The golf fundraiser is for the Brad Rheingans Scholarship Fund, now five years old. DB/LQPV wrestlers have the opportunity to receive scholarships for camps and college.

Rheingans placed fourth in the 1976 Olympics. He also qualified for the 1980 team but did not get to wrestle because of the boycott.

He wrestled professionally starting with Verne Gagne's American Wrestling Association in 1983. He also trained many professional wrestlers, including Brock Lesnar and the Nasty Boys, as well has teaching amateur wrestlers through his career.

Rheingans returned to his hometown to live and has become involved in civic projects.

His mother, Lois Aasland and her husband Jim Aasland, also live in Appleton and have been very supportive in this project and the scholarship fund

Rheingans' wresography

2-time Olympian in 1976 and '80.

Bronze Medal Greco-Roman World Championships in 1979

2-time Pan Am Gold Medalist in 1975 and '79

NCAA Champion at North Dakota State in 1975 and 4-time All-America

National Jr. World Champion Greco-Roman in 1971

6-time National AAU Champion

2-time Minnesota State High School Champion in 1970 and '71

Minnesota High School Hall of Fame 1980

NCAA Division II Hall of Fame 1997

George Tragos/Lou Thesz Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame 2004

West Central Tribune's Hengstler (now Hengstler-Ranweiler) Award Winner 1971

West Central Tribune Hall of Fame