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Exhibit of Ohio veterans’ art depicts war through their eyes

Saturday, November 12, 2016

By HOLLY ZACHARIAH

The Columbus Dispatch

COLUMBUS

Raine McMullen pushes certain chapters of the 10 months she spent in Afghanistan to the back of her mind.

There are things she saw and heard and experienced while deployed there that she doesn’t like to talk about. But the children? She will never forget them and is always eager to share their stories.

“They were so curious of the American soldiers,” said McMullen, who spent six years with the Army Reserve’s 412th Civil Affairs Battalion.

While deployed in 2011 to Ghazni province, she carried an inexpensive camera and took dozens of photographs. Now, a series of four of her photos are part of an exhibit, “Art Inspired by the Front Lines,” on display through Sunday in the lobby of the Vern Riffe Center downtown.

In addition to photographs from McMullen and others, the exhibit includes pencil drawings, watercolors and digital paintings. The work of 17 Ohio veterans is featured. Also among the pieces is a life-size bronze sculpture that depicts a soldier kneeling in mourning and respect before a fallen comrade’s gear.