Many attendees of AirVenture are veterans, men and women who have proudly served their country. While there are many ways in which these heroes are honored, pilot Rodney Jarrell, EAA Lifetime 1132855, found a unique way to do so. Rodney’s RV-10, N104AZ, has been painted with art celebrating each sector of the U.S. Armed Forces and the sacrifices that these men and women have made.
Working with famed artist John Stahr, EAA 714251, Rodney spent a long time planning each piece of art.
“It took probably six months, emailing back and forth pictures,” Rodney said. “[John] painted it in five weeks.”
Around the airplane, important figures and machinery from the many areas of the armed forces can be found. Pat Tillman, Jeannie Leavitt, and Bill Taylor are just some of the faces that grace this aircraft. A B-2 bomber can be found, as well as the USS Constitution, a Delphine helicopter, and the Coast Guard’s Eagle.
Other features on the airplane include the Twin Towers, the Statue of Liberty, the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, and an eagle.
“For me, [the eagle] stands for sacrifice, for freedom,” Rodney said.
While Rodney himself did not serve, he has spent much of his retired life honoring those who did.
“It’s turned into almost a lifestyle for me now,” Rodney said. “I’ve been to Air Force bases and met a lot of people, got a lot of friends through it. I work with some different veteran associations and help them out. This just became my life.”
While Rodney’s aircraft has won a bronze Lindy at AirVenture before, he simply comes to honor the veterans.
“I’d just like to thank the veterans,” Rodney said, “and God bless them for what they did.”