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Veterans Mural

Vaughn Avenue & Main Street
Summer 2005

The Veterans Mural, located on the west side of the Bay Theatre Building across the avenue from the Vaughn Library, came into being after some citizens stopped on the street where the artists were working and suggested that they paint a mural celebrating the service of the Ashland area men and women in the Armed Forces.

So, Meredith and Martinsen advertised for photographs in the local newspapers. Thus, all the veterans painted in the mural are actual people from the area.

Photos were chosen for clarity and to achieve as much variety as possible among the various branches of the Armed Forces. According to the artists, the mural does not make a political statement. It is just a portrait of local veterans representing the service that they were in, and it is a tribute to them.

The artists say that this mural was a very emotional one for them. As they were working on the mural one day, they heard an engine revving behind them. They saw a long-haired grizzled motorcyclist, a very rough-looking guy; but he was crying. He said, “Thank you for what you are doing,” and drove off. People have traveled from all over the country to see this mural and to have their photographs taken in front of it. It is reported that Don Baird, who is in his 80s, drove his RV all the way from California to see his portrait. During the dedication of the mural in the summer of 2005, many of the veterans represented came to stand under their portrait with their families.

This mural took two years to finish and was completely funded by the community. Donors’ names were linked with stars that formed the mural’s border.

This mural is in honor of all the Ashland area military men and women who served our nation in various wars and conflicts. Their sacrifices will never be forgotten.

We proudly salute them all.

  1. Lawrence (Ozzy) Gregoire
  2. Dean Tarasewicz
  3. James (Herby) Moore
  4. Jack Green
  5. Ben Blaszkowski
  6. Warren Johnson
  7. Elsie Kramolis Lajcak
  8. Eric Seestrom
  9. Chad Kupczyk
  10. Don Paitl
  11. Art Bertheaume
  12. Vincent Newago
  13. Jacob Westlund
  14. Walter Dietrich
  15. Greg Bebeau
  16. Alf Anderson
  17. Col. Robert Jones
  18. Alvin Larson
  19. Patrick Flynn
  20. Frank Mersy
  21. John Valentin Sukanen
  22. Eleanor Baird
  23. Ivan Bichanich
  24. Frederick Wm. VanVlack
  25. Emil Tadevich
  26. William G. Simonson
  27. Donald Baird
  28. Lt. Col. Bernard Josephson
  29. John L. Ochsenbauer
  30. Stan Bebeau
  31. Marge Newago Pascale
  32. Richard Wallace
  33. Edwin G. Hanninen
  34. Robert Kabasa
  35. Elman A. Parent
  36. Gaylord Dewey
  37. John Cloud
  38. Annette Aina
  39. Kim Briske
  40. John Kovach
  41. Lewis Tarasewicz