Over the past 13 years Vietnam Veteran Michael Reagan has drawn more than 4,000 portraits of fallen soldiers. His effort, called the Fallen Heroes Project, has gained national and international attention for his incredible work to remember the soldiers who paid the ultimate sacrifice.
Now, the Snoqualmie Valley School District is working hard to raise money for his effort that is funded entirely by donations. Reagan draws the portraits for free and delivers them to families of the fallen. Over the past few years the Snoqualmie Valley School District has raised thousands to help him out, but considering he draws one to two soldiers a day, they know even that is not enough.
Reagan spoke to the students at Mount Si High School on Thursday about what the importance of remembering a soldier’s sacrifice.
“They need to understand that there’s a cost to this war that’s not dollars or politics. It’s real life,” Reagan said. “Most of the people that I’ve drawn and we know this from other conversations, these people volunteer, I volunteered to go to Vietnam in 66, I knew there was a war. People do that and they are paying the price.”
“Gold stars don’t get enough recognition. I think out ofall the people in the country who should be respected the most it’s a gold star family, because guess what they gave up, they gave up their life, for me. And they didn’t know me,” Reagan added.
Reagan said he was very impressed by the response of the students.
“When you have a high school student crying because of what they just heard, and they just heard 15 minutes of a 13 year story, that means they understand,” Reagan said.
He hopes to keep the project alive for many more years, but it all depends on his ability to fundraise.
“All of this is important is important because what we’re touching is the love and loss in this country,” Reagan said. “It’s not about anything other than love and loss, and I love these people and they’ve suffered a huge loss for me, and all I’m trying to do is say thank you.”
He hopes you all find a way to remember our fallen heroes.
“Veterans Day is not about sales. It’s about taking a minute to think,” Reagan said. “When you go home tonight and you go to bed, I want you to think about a fallen hero and just say thank you.”
If you would like to help out with this incredible project you can find more information on his website at fallenheroesproject.org