Painting honours fallen soldiers

.

  • Jul. 6, 2011 4:00 p.m.

JULIE BERTRAND/Independent reporter

The Town of Stettler and the surrounding area will receive a special visit on September 12.

Portraits of Honour, which is a giant painting depicting the 157 soldiers, sailors and airmen who have died in the line of duty in Afghanistan, will make a stop in Stettler during its Pan-Canadian tour. It will be the tour’s only stop in East Central Alberta, apart from Red Deer and Camrose.

The painting, which is in a self-sufficient trailer, will be exposed at West Stettler Park.

Town councilor Leona Thorogood has worked really hard to get the Portraits of Honour to stop here. Now, she needs some help.

There is no cost to bring this tour to Stettler, but in return the tour asks that the town raise funds to support the Military Families Fund and associated military charities.

Thorogood’s objective is to raise $30,000 for the fund.

“I have some great ideas that I would like to share with a community based committee that would be simple to execute in a short period of time,” said Thorogood.

She wants to invite all interested parties to an organizational meeting on July 12 at 12 p.m. at the SRC upstairs meeting room to discuss plans for the tour stop and opportunities that will be available.

She believes that the painting will emotionally impact all people who see it.

“It doesn’t matter if you don’t support the mission in Afghanistan or any other war. It’s about the people that serve,” explained Thorogood.

“It’s about those people that give up themselves to support the freedom that we enjoy. That is what it is about. It’s about those people and their families.”

She hopes that the local schools will bring their students to see the painting.

“It will be an opportunity for the younger generations to come face to face with the people that have given them the freedom that they enjoy,” said Thorogood.

“This isn’t just a name on a plaque somewhere, it is an actual person. When you look into the eyes of a 19-year-old that has passed away, serving in Afghanistan, you can’t help but be impacted.”

For more information or to RSVP for the meeting, please contact Leona Thorogood at 403-740-9121 or nlthoro@telus.net.