Known For Giving Back, Family Honors Legacy With 'Wayman Tisdale Day'

Thursday, June 7th 2018, 6:38 pm
By: News On 6

One of the greats in Oklahoma sports was never shy about giving back; it’s a legacy that’s continuing with Wayman Tisdale Day.

There's no question Wayman Tisdale is a legend in Oklahoma - his family knows how much he meant to state and them.

"It means a lot to me. It applies pressure to us to be great and to always know that people are watching us. It gives us a goal to always strive for because he was so great," said Tiffany Tisdale-Braxton, Wayman’s daughter.

The accolades are remarkable athletically - a three-time All-American at Oklahoma and an Olympic Gold Medalist - but also musically, with a career with eight jazz albums.

But, after undergoing treatment for cancer in his knee, part of his right leg was amputated.

His experience led him to start the Wayman Tisdale Foundation, which was established a year before he passed away after complications in cancer treatments.

Tisdale’s family has continued to honor his legacy with Wayman Tisdale Day.

"It's just a really good way to honor him and to kind of embody all the things that made him happy," Tisdale-Baxter said.

The Wayman Tisdale Foundation helps raise money for minimally insured Oklahomans looking for prosthetic devices. This weekend, it hopes to help raise awareness and raise more money for the foundation.

And it stems from the Wayman's experience with the cost of prosthetics.

"By the time we had finished, we had far succeeded that $50,000. At least we had $50,000, some people have none," said Wayman’s wife, Regina Tisdale.

This will be the second Wayman Tisdale Day, a concept started by his daughter.

"I always said when I open my restaurant, I'm going to have Wayman Tisdale Day, and it was a huge success. So, now I was like, I want to do an annual thing," she said.

Regina Tisdale said, "If he was here, he'd say, ‘Hey, I'm going to do a big jam session.’ He had musicians who were his buddies and we're going to give proceeds to the foundation. I could see Wayman doing this without a thought."