WINNETKA – Former Governor Pat Quinn will commemorate Veterans Day by opening the “Portrait of a Soldier” exhibit at the Winnetka Community House (620 Lincoln Ave.) on Monday, November 12 at 5:00-6: 00 PM.
The display features hand-drawn portraits of 291 Illinois men and women killed in Iraq and Afghanistan since September 11, 2001.
“When you look at the faces in these powerful portraits, you see how young and vibrant these heroes are,” Quinn said. “This exhibit reminds us all of those who gave the last full measure of devotion for our democracy.”
The unique exhibit – which seeks to put faces to the names of the fallen – is comprised of portraits created by artist Cameron Schilling of Mattoon, Illinois. The project began when Schilling drew a portrait of fellow Mattoon resident U.S. Army Spc. Charles Neeley after Neeley lost his life in Iraq.
Schilling – then a student at Eastern Illinois University – committed himself to drawing a portrait of every Illinois servicemember killed in the Global War on Terror. Each portrait is lovingly done in Schilling’s evocative style. His efforts caught the eye of then-Lieutenant Governor Quinn, who established the “Portrait of a Soldier” memorial exhibit in 2004 and began taking the display to venues across Illinois.
Governor Quinn will be joined by veterans and military families to honor the sacrifice made by Illinois servicemembers since Sept. 11, 2001. Members of the Winnetka community will also be in attendance.
“Portrait of a Soldier” will be on display in the Community House from Friday, November 9th through, Monday, November 12th with the commemorate ceremony Monday, November 12th at 5:00-6:00 PM