The original painting that is the foundation of the card shown at the top is entitled, “Does the Banner Yet Wave?” It is the red and white stripes and the blue hand prints. It was painted in the year 2000, during a time I sensed a deep injustice in the world, especially at home in the United States. It is also meant to remind us, however, that our country and the freedom for which our flag stands is made of our own design. It is a hands-on process we must choose to be a part of to ensure our life and liberty is focused on the pursuit of our own happiness.
Part of the inspiration came when I met Cody Anderson shortly before he was preparing to walk from Naples, Florida to Ft. Myers, Florida for charity. He told me he had just adopted the 101st Airborne Division and was hoping to find others who want to support our United States troops who had been sent into war.
His passion inspired me to create a card that could be used to send the troops and after much contemplation, we agreed to use the design shown here. I am glad to offer cards to honor any of the units serving in war time. We are currently working out many details with the Pentagon. Soon, we hope to provide you with addresses that can be downloaded from the Internet so you can also adopt a soldier or two or write to an entire troop telling them they are not fighting in vain to protect our rights.
Walking from Naples to Ft. Myers is certainly a task that takes true commitment. This is not Cody’s first or longest walk, however. In 1979, Cody created the “Walk for Life,” as he walked 4,800 miles across the United States pulling a covered wagon for the “American Heart Association.” In 1989, Cody created the “Pedal for Life,” as he rode 7,200 miles across the United States in a homemade, miniature space shuttle in honor of Christa McAuliffe and the Challenger crew to benefit C.A.R.E., helping to feed the hungry in 64 countries. In May, 2001, Cody created the “Flight for Life,” when he para-sailed from Marco Island to St. Petersburg, Florida to benefit “The American Cancer Society.”
Cody’s efforts have earned him the key to 60 cities in the U.S. He has also received letters of commendation from 10 governors, “best wishes” of two Presidents, four Senators and even British Prime Minister Tony Blair. Cody believes that “if you don’t personally take charge and do good in this world, it will not get done.” My hopes is that this art captures a spark of the passion I found in Cody!