These are some of the portraits I’ve painted of prominent figures of African-American heritage for Black History Month.
Thank you to all those who have served this great nation of ours!
Those of you who have followed my work may already know that I have an ongoing tribute to veterans. I’ve painted portraits of several of our local veterans from the Korean War, Vietnam War and World War II (See portraits below). I planned on doing some more this year, to continue the series, but, the pandemic slowed things down in that regard. Nevertheless, I’d like to thank these veterans and all of the veterans of our military branches for their service and would like to say that I am personally grateful for the liberty their efforts have afforded us all as a people.
The portraits below were commissioned for a poster by the local VA equal opportunity department. The poster was to include veterans of Pacific Islander heritage. The veterans were all stationed at Fairchild AFB, WA
Today, June 6th, 2020 is the 76th anniversary of D-Day. I painted this portrait last year of a WWII veteran that lives in Spokane. His name is Bill Butler. I spoke with his son today and he said his dad is doing well in spite of the pandemic.
Thank you, Bill and all those veterans that served with you. We owe you all a great debt. May the freedom you afforded us endure!
Paul William (Bill) Butler
Service: Army Air Corps/USAF
Rank: 1st Lt.
Dates Served: 1942 – 1965 (Retired)
Highest Medal: Air Medal
Specialty: Bombardier, Garrison Commandant, General’s Aide
Stations: Geiger AFB, Hamilton AB, Anchorage AK, Bitburg AB GE, Ploesti, Yugoslavia, Campagnella, IT. Retired at Mcchord AFB in 1965
War: WWII, Korea
Aircraft: “Katie Did”, “Dutchess”, “Bucket of Bolts”
First Lieutenant Butler served in the Army Air Corps as a B-24 bombardier during World War II. He flew 53 bombing missions in the European theater and was shot down on seven separate occasions. On one of those occasions, he was captured by enemy forces and imprisoned in a POW camp from which he escaped.
Lt. Butler was wounded in combat but refused his Purple heart because he felt some of his comrades in arms were more deserving than he. He also served as (5-star) General of the Air Force Hap Arnold’s aide.
“Fourscore and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.”
“I was conductor of the Underground Railroad for eight years, and I can say what most conductors can’t say – I never ran my train off the track and I never lost a passenger.”Harriet Tubman
My latest digital artwork: “Let Freedom Ring” a private commission, was done with Adobe’s Illustrator Draw app on an iPad Pro.
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