HORTON, KS (KSNT) – A new mural in Horton is doing more than just beautifying what once was just a brick wall. It’s honoring the lives of those who have made the ultimate sacrifice for our country.
“We’ve had the dream for a number of years,” Reinvent Horton President Connie Werner said. “We got a hold of the artist that did this mural and then told them about the stories of the gentlemen that lost their lives and the history of our armory here and a number of different historical things.”
So they got to work. In under two weeks, Chase Hunter along with other artists with “The Arts Department” made a dream into a reality. Something Hunter says he is grateful they got the opportunity to do.
“It was an honor,” Hunter said. “I’m very grateful for the opportunity to put some paint where it ain’t and do something for the community and the people. The wounds are still fresh with these people and to kind of let them know these people aren’t forgotten and they deserve to be honored in the way we did.”
While this mural is dedicated to many, it hits closer to home for Kristy Runde, the sister of Don Clary, who lost his life alongside Clint Wisdom who both died in a car bombing while serving our country.
“To have other people still continue to speak about him, and honor him, and do something like this mural is just overwhelming and it’s humbling,” Runde said. “But it means just so much to me and everybody else, because 19 years later people still haven’t forgotten about him, they’re still remembering him and that just means the world to us.”
And they’re both still remembered by many. Including former Topeka Police Chief Bill Cochran who was with Don and Clint when they lost their lives.
“Don, he was kind of like a gentle giant,” Cochran said. “He was a bigger kid, I call him a kid you know but, you know he played football and all that other stuff. But he was fun-loving, he was a gentle giant, he would do anything for ya. And Clint was kind of like the granddad you know. He was older, wiser, been around, he had been in desert storm, so he had been there done that.”
While the mural is completed, it will be officially open to the public on November 11 with a special event. It will start at 11 in the morning with the presentation of arms followed by a special program. This event will include multiple speakers as well the artists who made this mural possible. The site will one day become a park and museum to honor veterans.