UP school gets donation of portraits of Vietnam veterans

Associated Press

Marquette – An Upper Peninsula school will be the new home for more than 20 paintings of Vietnam War veterans.

The art was created by Steve Wahlstrom, a Marquette-area man who served in Vietnam. He says he painted the men after his return home from the Marines.

They will be displayed at the Freeden Art Galley inside Marquette Senior High School. Principal Jon Young says the art is an opportunity for students to make a connection to “what people call the real world.”

The Mining Journal says each painting has the veteran’s name and a short biography. The paintings will be formally dedicated on Nov. 11, Veterans Day. The donation was arranged with help from Robert Mercure, a retired educator.

Wahlstrom says he painted the men “from the inside out.’” He says he knows “what they’ve been through.”