WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – Representatives of the Wichita Wind Surge and Emprise Bank gathered Monday for the unveiling of a portrait of Lou Schwechheimer at Riverfront Stadium.
Schwechheimer, 62, died in July from complications related to COVID-19.
The portrait, which was commissioned by Emprise Bank and painted by local artist John Oehm, will hang in the Wind Surge offices as a permanent tribute to Lou and the impact he made on Wichita.
“It has been humbling to see the impact that Lou had on the community in the short time that he was in Wichita,” said Jane Schwechheimer, Lou’s wife and majority General Partner. “For those who spent even a minute with Lou, you can see how much of his positive, joyful spirit John Oehm was able to capture. I am so glad that Lou’s portrait will be here to welcome fans and partners into the Wind Surge offices.”
In November 2019, Emprise Bank was announced as the team’s first Legacy Partner just days before the unveiling of the Wind Surge name and logo. But the partnership – and friendship between Lou and Emprise Bank CEO Matt Michaelis – was sparked long before on Lou’s first trip to Wichita to see and experience the community where he was considering relocating his baseball team.
“I consider myself lucky to have called Lou a friend and I am truly honored to have welcomed him to Wichita, to hear his vision and experience his enthusiasm for creating the family gathering place that is now Riverfront Stadium,” said Emprise Bank CEO Matt Michaelis. “Lou’s legacy will live on for many years to come through what he accomplished and the zeal through which he approached everything he did. Our hope is that this portrait of Lou will bring a smile to those who knew him best each time they pass it in the Wind Surge offices.”
“We are extremely grateful to Emprise Bank for their generosity in commissioning this wonderful tribute to Lou,” said Wind Surge CEO Jordan Kobritz. “It is very fitting that Lou will have a permanent place in the team offices, in the stadium he brought to life.”
Artist John Oehm lives and works in Wichita. He received his BA from the University of Nebraska, Kearney, NE and his MA in Painting from Wichita State University.