Bald Knob mayor fulfills campaign promise to paint mural for vet - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

Bald Knob mayor fulfills campaign promise to paint mural for veterans

BALD KNOB, AR (KAIT) - The mayor of Bald Knob promised during his campaign to commission a mural honoring local veterans. Doyle Wallace made good on that promise, as an artist puts the finishing touches on a project bringing the community closer together.

"It's very appealing to the eye when you stop and take a look at it," Samuel Tucker said.

Tucker has enjoyed driving by the mural at the corner of Main Street and Arkansas 367, watching the large painting progress day by day.

"When they put the Air Force (insignia) in, that's what caught my eye because that's what I spent 20 years in," Tucker said.

The mural depicts the insignias from each military branch and also shows other familiar military symbols, like an airplane and a ship. The wall has a special meaning to Tucker, a 20-year Air Force veteran who fought in Korea and Vietnam.

"I defended (my country) honorably and proudly. I'm proud to be a veteran," Tucker said.

"I couldn't think of anything around Bald Knob that we had that did recognize or salute our veterans," Mayor Wallace said.

The mural will serve as a veterans memorial in Bald Knob, the first of its kind in the close-knit community. Wallace, a Korean War veteran, formed a committee with four other veterans to raise money for the mural. Carl White, Roger Heathscott, David Miller and Clois Cox round out the group. The five men have raised $2,500 so far to pay Gene Reagan of Bradford to finish the large-scale painting.

 "I just know that when they came to me I just quickly responded and said, yeah, go ahead and paint it right here," John Fisher said.

Fisher provided the 14 by 40-foot canvas on the side of his building. He says the mural is the talk of the town, and he hopes that it draws the community closer together – one brush stroke at a time.

"We have freedom because we have people that have stepped up and done their part, and so this is just a way to give back a little to them," Fisher said.

Wallace says the mural should be done in time for Veterans Day. He plans to hold a dedication ceremony so that the community can admire the finished work. 

Copyright 2011 KAIT. All rights reserved.

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