KLAMATH FALLS, Ore. --
High over Klamath Falls, one local child’s art will soar through the sky after the 173rd Fighter Wing revealed Kamron Bouma’s art would grace the nose of a U.S. Air Force F-15C Eagle.
After watching his dad take command of the 173rd FW maintenance group, Bouma joined his family to pose under his art, already applied to the Eagle by the 173FW structural shop.
In his creative art, a stick figure throws a paper airplane which loops around Oregon before turning into a F15. Along the way, the words “Work hard, dream big” can be seen, as an admonishment to put in the hard work necessary to achieve goals.
His artwork was selected out of a statewide contest, along side the 142FW in Portland, Ore., who also selected an artwork for a jet. The month of the military child is a “purple” program by the Department of Defense, meaning that it is shared across all the military branches.
Cecily Gaudinski, 173FW Airman and Family Readiness Center manager, helped organize the program.
“That one was drawn by my kid,” she said, pointing to a similar artwork pinned to her wall.
“It’s a month to celebrate the challenges and resiliency of being a military child,” said Gaudinski, adding that it is important to show support for the children of military members, who may have to sacrifice a lot while their parents serve.
Military children have to grow up with the normal challenges every child faces, but also handle the additional load of absent parents, unpredictable schedules, and constant moving. “That can be a lot to handle,” she continued.
Gaudinski emphasized that the artwork demanded a lot of creativity, saying the “submissions by children from all across the state were impressive.”
Bouma was excited to see his work on the F-15 that bears his dad’s name, saying with a smile that “It’s really cool.”