Veteran loans sculpture
Viet Nam Veteran Charles Hamilton of Irma delivered his 10-foot tall metal sculpture on Thursday, Feb. 23, for temporary display at the Oscar G. Johnson VA Medical Center in Iron Mountain, MI. On hand to accept the sculpture was Mr. James Rice, Medical Center Director.
The statue “Determination” is that of a wounded military person carrying a flag with helmets at the base. It had been displayed in the past with The Moving Wall, a traveling replica of the Viet Nam Memorial Wall in Spooner, WI. Mr. Hamilton purposely left the statue faceless, genderless and lacking service identity to represent all men and women who have served in the armed forces of the United States.
“This sculpture is priceless,” said Hamilton, “because I don’t own it. It is for all Veterans and patriots.”
Mr. Hamilton has been doing metal sculptures for seven years.
“The VA actually got me into making metal sculptures,” said Hamilton. “I took a course in welding through the VA’s rehabilitation program.
“Afterwards, I began to play with some models, liked it and took off from there,” he added.
Hamilton has created numerous metal art pieces and completed five patriotic metal sculptures so far, with all but one having been displayed with The Moving Wall. In addition to Determination, he has sculpted Sailor Boy, Valor (on display at the Rhinelander VA clinic), The Jungle and his most recent, The Journey.
Hamilton’s motivation for creating this unique sculpture was to help veterans heal those spiritual wounds while offering the public a moving tribute to the sacrifice of servicemen and women and their families.
Indeed, it has already impacted visitors. Soon after it was set into place in main entrance, one young Veteran entering the Medical Center took a cell phone picture of the sculpture. Another, an elderly Veteran, walked up to it, looked at it closely, and then asked who made it. He was directed to Mr. Charles Hamilton, and the Veteran thanked him.
The Determination sculpture is anticipated to be on display for approximately three months then it may be viewed at The Moving Wall in June in Wausau.