Kinkade Painting Print now at Bryan-Bennett Library
Library Board President Jane Gaston, Rogers, Library Director Kim Keller, and Rich Crouse of Rogers Atkins Funeral Home.
The Thomas Kinkade “Homecoming Hero” print is now available for viewing at Bryan-Bennett Library.
Larry Rogers of Salem purchased the picture in honor of the American Legion Honor Guard and formally presented it to the Legion in a ceremony on December 1. Rogers has allowed the picture to be permanently located at the Bryan-Bennett Library so that a greater number of people will be able to view the picture in the future.
This print was selected and personally enhanced by Thomas Kinkade. He signed the back of the painting and even drew a flag in charcoal pencil. It is number 7 of only 395 productions of this particular picture.
In documentation accompanying the picture, Thomas Kinkade highlights some of the ideas behind the inspiration for the picture.
“Soldiers make a profession of traveling to foreign lands and fighting battles for country, honor and to protect our way of life. But every battle must come to an end and with it the rejoicing of soldiers finally coming home. It’s a glorious and joyous event when the troops return to their families and loved ones
“In this scene, I envision a simple country setting containing all the elements of home that soldiers from every branch of the military have always fought or, regardless of their place in history – security, peace, tranquility, family and community life. This is my tribute to all of the men and women who have ever served in the military – for those who have unselfishly sacrificed everything for this great country.
“My inspiration for this image came from Norman Rockwell’s ‘The Homecoming Marine,’ the most collected cover in the rich history of the ‘Saturday Evening Post.’ In this image, the well-worn bus makes its dusty way down the unpaved road. It has been down this same route many times, buy never on such a joyous mission. The homecoming soldier is greeted by his family, reminding us that life can once more return to normal. My own father came home triumphantly after his generation’s war. World War II was a time of extraordinary service and yet great rejoicing as the soldiers made their way home to neighborhoods, towns and cities throughout the country.
“In today’s world, our hope is that our soldiers will be coming home soon as well, and that their homecoming will be as joyous as the one depicted in ‘Homecoming Hero,” states Kinkade in his Certificate of Limitation and Authenticity.
“We are honored that Mr. Rogers and the Legion have allowed us to display ‘Homecoming Hero.’ It is such a beautiful depiction of a soldier arriving home from battle. The entire scene represents so many basic American ideals of service and family. The picture really does tell an interesting and touching story,” states Library Director Kim Keller.
“Of course the picture shows off Mr. Kinkade’s trademark use of light and color to draw the viewer into the story he is depicting. Also, there are so many elements to the scene that you cannot take in everything in one viewing,” adds Keller.
“The Library is proud that Mr. Rogers has entrusted us with this permanent tribute to the American Legion Honor Guard,” adds Keller.