Possessions of athlete behind ice bucket challenge for sale


BOSTON—Jerseys, baseball bats and other items that belonged to Pete Frates, the former college baseball player whose inspiring fight with Lou Gehrig’s disease helped popularize the ALS ice bucket challenge, are being auctioned.

Proceeds from the online auction that runs through Tuesday will benefit the Peter Frates Family Foundation, which assists ALS patients and their families with the cost of home health care, according to a spokesperson for auctioneer KBK Sports.

A Sotheby’s employee holds a pair of Nike sneakers worn in a game by the late basketball superstar Kobe Bryant. It is estimated to sell between 25,000 -to 35, 000 Swiss francs.

The goal is to raise about $10,000.

Some of the items for sale include a signed and framed photograph from New England Patriots Coach Bill Belichick; a Boston Bruins jersey signed by former player Bobby Orr; and an autograph from former Boston Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling.

A Metallica jersey given to Frates by the rock band, his high-school baseball jerseys, and even his personal Boston College trash can are also for sale.

Frates, a former Boston College baseball player who lived in Beverly north of Boston, died in December 2019 after a seven-year battle with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. He and his family inspired the spread of the ice bucket challenge and helped raise millions of dollars for research into the motor neuron disease, which has no cure.


A DIAMOND bracelet that once belonged to France’s Marie Antoinette and a sapphire-and-diamond brooch with matching ear clips that once dangled from a Russian grand duchess are among the featured items in auctions of jewelry and other collectibles next week in Geneva.

Also going under the hammer in the lakeside Swiss city will be a pair of high-top Nike sneakers from the late National Basketball Association star Kobe Bryant, the Los Angeles Lakers shooting guard who died in a helicopter crash in California last year.

The blue, white and gold Nike Air Zoom Huarache 2K4 basketball shoes are expected to fetch up to 35,000 Swiss francs (about $38,000) during a November 11 sale at Sotheby’s.

Bryant wore the sneakers in a March 17, 2004, victory over the LA Clippers, according to the auction house.

But as usual in the Geneva fall auction season, diamonds, emeralds, sapphires, rubies and other prized gems will be the highlights of next week’s sales at Sotheby’s and rival Christie’s.

Christie’s is putting up on Tuesday an eye-popping pair of heavy bracelets from the 18th century that are studded with three rows of small diamonds. The bracelets are billed as one of the last remaining vestiges of Marie Antoinette’s rich jewelry cabinet that are still available for sale.

The auction house said the famed royal and wife of King Louis XVI was known to have carefully wrapped her jewels in cotton herself, hoping to keep them outside revolutionary France— which ultimately took her life via the guillotine. The bracelets, commissioned around 1776, were kept within royal lineage for over 200 years, Christie’s said.

“Despite Marie-Antoinette’s capture in the French Revolution and her unfortunate death in 1793, the bracelets survived and were passed on to her daughter, Madame Royale, and then the Duchess of Parma,” said Max Fawcett, head of Christie’s jewelry department, referring respectively to Marie-Therese of France, the couple’s daughter, and Princess Louise d’Artois, who died in 1864.

“To see them up for auction today is a unique opportunity for collectors around the world to own a piece of French royal history,” Fawcett said.

The pre-sale estimate for the bracelets is up to 4 million Swiss francs ($4.38 million). They each weigh 97 grams (3.42 ounces), and include “old-cut” diamonds as well as silver and gold, Christie’s said.

Among the lots Sotheby’s plans to present on Wednesday is a pair of “perfectly matched” earrings, each set with 25.8-carat diamonds, that is expected to fetch up to 5 million francs ($5.5 million).

It will also showcase a brooch with a 26.8-carat oval sapphire surrounded by diamonds, and matching ear clips that once belonged to Grand Duchess Maria Pavlovna and were whisked out of Russia during the country’s 1917 revolution. The trio is expected to garner as much as 480,000 francs ($525,800).

“She was the wife of Grand Duke Vladimir, the son of the tsar, and she was really passionate about jewelry. She had a fantastic collection of jewels,” Olivier Wagner, the head of Sotheby’s Magnificent Jewels sales, said. AP

Image courtesy of AP

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