Massive military mural in Lawson gets expert help from 97-year-old WWII veteran

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LAWSON, Mo. — There’s a new, powerful tribute to America’s military in a small town northeast of Kansas City. And the paint dried on this massive mural at the Lawson VFW Post 6278 just in time for Memorial Day weekend.

“You just step back, and you’re in awe,” said Jeff Bye, post commander. “It almost gives you goosebumps.”

Every branch of the military is honored in the mural on the north wall of the VFW post. Local artist Jacob Duncan had some expert help with some of the finer details.

Roy Cheek, a World War II veteran who served as a ball turret gunner over Germany, assisted with technical details.

“Mr. Cheek came by here several times,” Duncan said. “He even brought me a model plane to look at, just to get the specs right. He’s been real helpful. He has awesome stories. He’s a really interesting guy.”

Cheek volunteered to serve as ball turret gunner shortly after joining the Army Air Corps in 1943.

“They said, ‘if you don’t volunteer to be a ball turret gunner, you’re a chicken,’” Cheek recalled to FOX4. “So I held up my hand, I didn’t want to be a chicken.”

Check out the mural in the video player above or see it in person. Post 6278 is hosting a special ceremony at 6 p.m. Friday. It will be held at the city park across from the post. Everyone is welcome.

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