Statue Proposed To Honor “Mr. Burien” Dick Dahlgard

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This whimsical statue, designed by artist Phillip Levine, would depict the late
Dick Dahlgard as a camera on a tripod with three human legs.

by Gina Bourdage

Burien lost one of its most notable citizens in November 2008, when “Mr. Burien,” Richard “Dick” Dahlgard, passed away.

Formerly the owner of Dick’s Camera and pillar of the community through many charity involvements, Dick is a man that will not soon be forgotten and Jim Hughes, owner of Sal’s Deli, is organizing efforts to have a public art piece erected in memorial of Mr. Dahlgard.

“We tend to forget our heroes fairly quickly and Dick was definitely one of mine,” said Hughes.

Working more than 90 hours a week at Sal’s Deli has not detoured Hughes from taking on the large fundraising and planning task of the proposed art piece. A designed by nationally renowned local artist Phillip Levine will depict a whimsical 35mm camera with three human legs as a tripod. A large unraveling roll of film with be place at the lower region of the piece and may include the long list of civic involvements Mr. Dahlgard selflessly dedicated so much of his time towards. The sculpture will stand over six feet high and will be crafted from brass; the location for installation is still being discussed but is proposed for the new town square development.

Due to budget conservations the City of Burien is unable to fund the project and organizers are reaching out to the community for private donations. To make a contribution please stop by Sterling Bank or by mail to:

“Dick Dahlgard Memorial Fund”
c/o Sterling Bank
224 SW 152nd Street
Burien, WA 98166

All checks can be made out to the “Dick Dahlgard Memorial Fund.”

Each donor will receive a special invitation to the unveiling presentation and the piece of mind knowing they are helping to honor the memory of a man who did so much for so many for so long.

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6 Responses to “Statue Proposed To Honor “Mr. Burien” Dick Dahlgard”
  1. tom fletcher says:

    great idea, the statue as proposed sounds great the location could be in front of his store, but less foot traffic goes by there…..why not make the statue hollow with an openingso people can stick coin and paper money in it…like the JP Patches and Gertrude statue is. the gift that keeps on giving! Local places like the Hospitality House, the food bank and other places can get the money! It should be that way, in fact, it must be. i am sure dick would be thrilled at the idea.

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  2. Ann says:

    Looks like a perfect new addition to the 'interim' Art Project! Maybe another set of massive footprints (in three rows, of course) leading up to it?

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  3. Jack Block Jr. says:

    This is too good an idea to let fail. Dick was a great guy, and God forbid we have a piece of public art in Town Square that is approachable. I like the idea of having a slot for donations- keeps in line with Dick's work in the community.

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    • tom fletcher says:


      I did not know Dick all to well,but the few times I did meet him, it was awesome. He made some awesome comments on my art one night, The day before, i was in his store buying mattes, and he thanked me for buying so many!. some people i used to know also said they really liked him too. I am serious about the “hollow” statue to put money in. i think that is an important aspect. It could be in the town square with a brief explanation (Dick Dahlgard of “dick’s camera… and a list of places the money will go to.) and perhaps his photo

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  4. Let's go Swimming says:

    Hope to see it at the new square. My family & friends have enjoyed seeing the great artwork in Burien that's actually pleasing to the eye & mind. Nice change from what's around the city of Seattle.

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  5. Laurel Mercury says:

    The sculpture sounds like a great idea. Maybe a photo of Dick could be put on the lens somehow. Burien is not the same without Dick. Laurel

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