Family of late artist Ron Artis restores landmark mural

Family of late artist Ron Artis restores landmark mural

If you've driven down Nimitz Highway near the airport you've probably seen it: A symbol of patriotism on the side of the Island Demo building.

It was painted by Hawaii artist Ron Artis, who died in December 2010.

"It was in honor of everyone who was at the Pentagon and in the Twin Towers," said Artis's wife, Victoria.

While the mural is one-of-a-kind, up until last month its flag and bald eagle were barely recognizable. The mural was a victim of graffiti and time.

"We started the project on my father's birthday, Nov. 20," said PraiseJesus Artis.

On Friday, Artis' wife and eight of their children were back on the job giving the artwork new life.

On the lift were his two oldest daughters. "It's really emotional and special to me," said PraiseJesus Artis.

"This is what PraiseJesus wanted to do for her birthday in honor of her father," said Victoria Artis.

The owner of the building is a Vietnam veteran and was a good friend of Ron Artis. He says watching Artis's children restore his wall means everything.

"I don't know it just feels good. Each one of them has a special talent and when you put them all together the talent is way beyond anything you could ever imagine," said Mike Leary.

As the wall is restored, family members say it's not only about honoring their father but honoring their country as well.

"I want to make him really proud and I also want to make everyone who sees it happy," said PraiseJesus Artis.

The Artis family says their next project is to restore a mural at Kahuku Medical Center.

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