A homemade Samurai stands guard at Southwest Truck Parts. i
A Samurai warrior standing guard by the front entrance of Southwest Truck Parts just west of the junction of U.S. Highways 54 and 61 on Pratt’s First Street might cause some to do a doubletake.
Business owner Dale Withers is responsible for the larger-than-life figure, built entirely from metal. Withers was in Las Vegas at a truck show last year. He saw several statues of various movie character figures on display at Caesar’s Palace but was especially struck by a statue of the movie character Robo Cop. He decided he wanted a similar statue for his business back home.
When Withers returned to Pratt, he told Ricky Stephens, an excellent welder who works in salvage at Southwest, that he wanted him to build a Robo Cop statue for the front of the store. Withers showed Stephens a photo of the Robo Cop statue from Las Vegas and told him to get to work.
Building the statue took a lot of spare time to create statue of metal with a clear coat finish. The warrior has armor, a helmet, a sword and spear.
A year after the statue was ordered, Stephens told Withers it was finished. But it wasn’t exactly what Withers had ordered.
Instead of Robo Cop, Stephens had gone another direction with the project and built a Samurai warrior. Withers was surprised but liked the Samurai statue and about three weeks ago had it installed in front of the store.
Withers said customers and people passing by on the highway have stopped and taken pictures and selfies with the warrior, bringing a bit of intrigue and publicity to the store.
Samurai warriors were military nobility in Japan for centuries, highly trained in fighting arts.