Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Perspective: Sculpting a soldier’s life

Thomas Tucker was one of three soldiers to die after a June 16, 2006 insurgent attack at a checkpoint they were guarding south of Baghdad. He and another soldier, Pfc. Kristian Menchaca of Houston, were missing for three days before troops recovered their booby-trapped bodies. He was 25.

TROUTDALE — The artist gently handles the fallen soldier’s camouflage backpack and its contents: a water bladder, patches from his uniform, a helmet cover.

“His mother talked about being able to smell her son,” says Rip Caswell quietly. “Just anything to get close to him one more time.”

The parents of Pfc. Thomas Tucker, killed in Iraq the age 25, gave Caswell their son’s wartime possessions. The renowned sculptor, who has a gallery in Troutdale, is working on a piece that reflects Tucker’s life and his passion, his love of children, his desire to make a difference.

Read the rest at the Gresham Outlook