Vision of Vets – A Photographer’s Project
I’d like to tell you a story about a colleague of mine. He’s a kind man. A giving man. A selfless man. And, a veteran himself.
In 2014 my friend Bruce Roscoe (of Aiyana Studio) had a vision. It came on a flight back from Rhode Island after photographing his best friend of 58 years. Doctors had told Bruce’s friend, Joe Rowe, he had only six months to live due to complications brought on by exposure to Agent Orange in Vietnam. Bruce offered to professionally photograph Joe so his family and friends would have something to remember him by when he was gone.
Bruce’s idea was to create a nonprofit organization whose mission was to memorialize the stories of U.S combat veterans and share that history with the family and the world. He envisioned adding a method for bringing photographs of combat veterans to life with the use of Live Portrait technology. Families could now view these after their loved ones had passed.
Bruce gained support for his idea in the local community of Prescott, Arizona. This was no surprise because Prescott and the surrounding towns host the largest number of veterans per capita in Arizona. With a wonderful Veterans Administration (VA) hospital and the large veteran population, he started gathering veteran stories with the help of experts. The helpers are now the Vision of Vets board of directors.
Following three years of continual work, in June 2017, the IRS recognized Vision of Vets as an official 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, and Bruce’s vision became a reality.
The Vision of Vets team are committed to not only capturing the stories from our country’s living veterans, but also telling the stories of war heroes from the French & Indian War and forward. Vision of Vets hires professional re-enactors to bring the stories of heroism and sacrifice back to life with the use of modern technology.
Each veteran in this project receives at no cost, a professional 16×20 framed portrait, prints in different sizes, a DVD of their interview, and an essay summarizing the interview.
You Can Help
You can be part of this story too! Help preserve history and add to the education tools in schools have to teach and remind students that ‘Freedom isn’t Free.’ Click here to learn more or Donate to Vision of Vets.
Yours in Creative Photography, Bob
PS – Below you can get an idea of how the Vision of Vets Live Portraits work.