Significant to my self-portrait in the painting is the eagle feather, with its stem beaded in the colors of the Vietnam Campaign medal.
I was a Marine Corps rifleman in Vietnam. Some friendships developed into something even deeper than brotherhood. One such bond was with Ernie LaMone, a full-blooded Navajo affectionately known as “Little Chief”. When I left Vietnam, I never thought about seeing or not seeing those people again – it was all about making it home safe.
Over 25 years later, Ernie and I came together again for our company’s first reunion. He presented me with the eagle feather, represented in the painting, as a gift of honor from one warrior to another. The apocalyptic sky in the painting represents war and unites the spirits of our past.