Airbrushed memorial artwork of Humboldt Broncos tugs at the heart strings

A memorial piece, painted by an Olds businessman in conjunction with a former trainer of the Humboldt Broncos junior hockey team, was unveiled for the first time on Friday.

Clint Jackson, who began airbrushing about six years ago, says Darryl Lowey came to him with the idea of a piece of art to remember the lives lost in the Humboldt Broncos bus crash on April 6, 2018.

Lowey, a part of the team back in the 1980s, said he was compelled to help the community heal after the tragic crash.

“That incident hit me like a ton of bricks. I still have ties to Humboldt. A friend of mine used to drive the bus. I originally thought it was him that was involved but thankfully it wasn’t. It’s still tragic for the others involved.”

Jackson worked on the piece for about four days and included the likeness of each one of the victims lost in the crash.

“I ended up doing the wings like they were a heart shape, broken after what happened and did the faces softly in the paint, just a memorial piece, something to attack you in the heart. I put my heart in it and I hope that the family likes it.”

He says the impact of the piece isn’t lost on anyone who sees it, even while it was being created.

“I was getting people coming into the shop and taking a look at it and just crying. I was getting big bikers and people from all walks of life that you don’t think would shed a tear. As soon as they saw that, it hit them in the heart and they started crying.”

Lowey says the piece will be on display at the Olds Mavericks’ first lacrosse match of the season, where it’s hoped that Grayson Cameron, one of the survivors of the fatal crash, will see it and sign it.

“One of the plans we have for this painting is that surviving members are able to sign the front of it but billets, organization members, community members in Humboldt, can come up and sign the back of it. If they are up there skating with angels, let’s give them the home team advantage.”

After that, the piece will be packed up and taken to Humboldt, where city council will be planning to receive it during a special meeting on Sunday.

Jackson says he is honoured that the community has already decided to display it there.

“I hope that it will help them heal and show that their children, grandpa, uncles that they will never be forgotten.”

(With files from Kevin Fleming)



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