SARASOTA, Fla. — Sarasota’s "Unconditional Surrender" statue will remain on the Bayfront and will move just a few hundred feet south of its present site.
The statue has to be moved to make room for a round-a-bout being built where Gulfstream Avenue meets US-41.
The “kissing sailor” sculpture commemorates a photograph taken of a U.S. Navy sailor grabbing and kissing a total stranger on V-J Day, marking the end of WWII.
Some controversy arose last year when the statue was vandalized with a"#MeToo" tag.
The sculpture has been on Sarasota's Bayfront for over a decade and is beloved by many residents and tourists.
"I was 14-years-old when the war ended, can you imagine? Everybody was happy. Everybody was downtown hugging and kissing everybody," said 89-year-old Marjorie Nicholas who was visiting the statue for the first time.
There were nine possible spots the statue would be moved to.
After a public hearing on Monday, commissioners voted 4-1 to accept the staff’s proposal and permanently move the 26-foot-tall “Unconditional Surrender” sculpture to the area between O’Leary’s Tiki Bar and Grill and Marina Jack.
The statue will be moved in January.