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Poignant Artwork by Famous Painter Gifted to the VFW National Home

Titled “Heading Home” the painting by renowned artist Thomas Kinkade depicts a solitary soldier with face unseen walking toward a light as if completing his tour of duty.

“The weight of all he has seen and done, of the pain he has borne and the trials he has overcome bear down on his broad shoulders. The soldiers personal war is over. He is Heading Home,” said the late Kinkade, often called the painter of light, in an explanation of this work.

“I did not choose to show the warrior’s face in my painting of the homecoming veteran. The hero of Heading Home is not an individual at all; he is the essence of the American soldier. We cannot tell whether he returns from Normandy, from Saigon, from Beirut. In a sense, he has spilled his blood on all those fields of honor,” Kinkade added.

Presented by Past Supreme Commander of the MOC

Dwight Hora, past Supreme Commander of the Military Order of the Cootie (MOC), desired to give a special gift to the VFW National Home to mark his recent tenure and signify the importance the VFW National Home has always had in the hearts of the VFW and MOC who founded it 100 years ago.

“I became aware of the “Heading Home” painting over ten years ago, and when I thought about what I wanted to give, I knew it was this painting,” explained Hora.

On March 28, Hora delivered the painting in person from his home in South Carolina, presenting it to Executive Director Mike Wilson and other National Home staffers.

“I hope this painting encourages the veterans and their families to understand that we want to help them get to their own homes, and we are providing them a place to recover from whatever challenges they are facing,” said Hora.

“Dwight has been a dedicated ally to the VFW National Home and speaks highly of our program wherever he goes.  I have grown a sincere admiration and respect for Dwight as he is always searching for ways to assist and better his fellow veterans. From the day we met in December of 2021 to today, he has been approachable and focused on solutions, traits that make him respected by many.  I am thankful for his thoughtful gift,” said Executive Director Mike Wilson.

The painting will be placed in the Veteran & Family Resource Center, where it will serve as a moving portrait of beauty and meaning to those who defended our nation.

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