Warrant Officer Mike Fay and I went today to Bethesda Naval Medical Center as part of our duties as combat artists, to sketch and draw the young marines recovering from wounds suffered in Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Talking to these marines was a joy and an honor (needless to say), as they truly represent the good in American youth. All had stories of combat, and of friends wounded and killed in the war. You could see the effect of the war on their faces, many times literally, as they bore scars from IEDs, mortars, and sniper fire.
Here are some of the sketches I did, and though some of them do not do justice to the subject, I thought it would be good to show them, so that people could see the faces of the young marines who have fought and been wounded, defending us in the War on Terror:
Sergeant Ryan King, wounded by IED. He has had some excellent facial surgery (I couldn't tell that his face and especially his nose, had seen some extensive damage).
Corporal Estaban Diaz, wounded in the head by an IED, with shrapnel through his left cornea. Incidently, he was born in Mexico, raised in the States a pastor's son, and is still waiting to be sworn in as a US citizen. (Can anyone say, "FASTTRACK this guy?!")
Sgt Todd Herman. The leader of the pack, with natural command presence, yet he's a heck of a nice guy. He's still having surgery on his face after having been wounded in 2004. This portrait isn't a perfect likeness, yet I put it up here because he was such a pleasure to work with and to draw.
I have several more images, which I will post tomorrow. I also hope to have some drawings from Walter Reed Army Medical Center, where Gunner Fay and I will be going tomorrow...