Friends, family and fans of Bob and Bill Meistrell, who co-founded Body Glove and co-owned Dive N Surf in Redondo Beach, have donated enough money to ensure the project to memorialize the twins at Seaside Lagoon moves forward.
As of Monday morning, the campaign had raised nearly $160,600 for the life-sized bronze statue of the Meistrell twins as lifeguards and accompanying benches.
The fundraising campaign officially kicked off Sunday at the paddle-out and reception in Redondo Beach for Bob Meistrell.
Hollywood Riviera resident Jackie Briles, who is known for the annual Fourth of July fireworks display she funds off Torrance Beach, donated $60,000 to pay for the statue, said Dinah Lary, a member of the three-person memorial statue committee.
Dave Parker, founder of Pelican Products, matched Briles' donation with a $60,000 one of his own, Lary told Patch. Briles and Parker will each have their names added to benches in the memorial.
The family of Russ Lesser, president of Body Glove, donated $5,000 for the final bench.
"The minimum I needed to make (the memorial) happen was $135,000," Lary told Patch in an email. The amount of money raised Sunday "was amazing," she added.
The statue will be sculpted by former Body Glove surfer Chris Barela.
When completed, the memorial will be placed near the entrance to Seaside Lagoon, a move the Redondo Beach City Council approved last week.
"The influence that Body Glove and Bob and Bill have made in the community is pretty remarkable," Lary told the council at its meeting last week. "Its interesting for me to hear all these stories now that Bob has passed … People you had no clue who knew Bob considered him a friend."
People can donate to the memorial fund by sending a check to the Redondo Beach Community Foundation at the Redondo Beach Chamber of Commerce. More information is available online.