U.S. Bank Stadium’s highest support beam gets ink


A storm may have delayed the final beam from going into place at U.S. Bank Stadium, but it didn’t stop a crowd from gathering to watch this important moment in the building’s construction.

On hand for this occasion were the U.S. Bank Stadium construction team, individuals from the Minnesota Vikings organization, local political figures and some members of the media.  Many of those on hand signed their names, dates, or important messages on the beam and watched as it was put into place.

Mark Wilf, the Minnesota Vikings co-owner, was exceptionally taken by this moment.  He expressed his excitement in a recent article on the Minnesota Public Radio website:

"“This kind of moment, you take it in and you say ‘Wow, this really — this dream of ours is becoming a reality,’ and we’re just so excited for everyone that’s going to be able to enjoy it for many years.”"

Aug 9, 2015; Canton, OH, USA; Minnesota Vikings helmet on the field during the 2015 Pro Football Hall of Fame game against the Pittsburgh Steelers at Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Despite the excitement, there was also sadness.  A moment of silence was taken to honor the life of Jeramie Gruber, the 35-year-old man who fell to his death from the roof of U.S. Bank Stadium in August.  The Vikings also dedicated their preseason game against the Dallas Cowboys in honor of Gruber and placed the initials JG on the back of their helmets.

One of the carpenters working on the structure, Jim Wells, will use the beam as a point of reference for his son when they attend the stadium together.

"“Yep, I’ll point it out to my son,” he said. “I know right where it’s going. Right there. It’s pretty cool. It’s an awesome thing to be a part of.”"

One particular inscription stands out on the piece from the photos I’ve seen.  Mark Wilf signed the beam and added two words after his autograph: “Skol Vikings.”

Next: Minnesota Vikings 2015 Game By Game Previews

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