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Click the titles to the left of the below images to view notable photos and browse news articles about Rick Kelley's art and charity work.

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  • World War II Veteran receives his print from Cape Coral artist Rick Kelley during his appearance at the Southwest Florida Military Museum and Library

    Artist Rick Kelley, who's patriotic American Freedom Series is winning acclaim nationally, appeared at the Southwest Florida Military Museum and Library in Cape Coral on June 25th to give out signed copies of his inspiring prints to veterans.

    Through the project called "Families of Our Fallen," Kelley has been donating one of the patriotic images of his "Freedom Series" to families of fallen soldiers throughout Southwest Florida in gratitude for the selfless efforts of the soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    The eagle, American symbol of pride and strength, is prominent in the series, which began with the painting "On Freedom's Wing." Kelley made the painting after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks against America in 2001.

    "America's strength and beliefs have made this country home to people seeking freedom," Kelley said in explaining the meaning behind his painting. "Like the Bald Eagle, we can soar to great heights and weather any storm. We can achieve our dreams by riding On Freedom's Wing."

    The response to that painting was so great that Kelley was inspired to create "Liberty's Flight", the second in the series.

    To commemorate the 10th anniversary of the 9-11 attacks and to honor the memory of all who were lost, Kelley produced "Reflection of Freedom." The painting is an interpretation of the heavens sending back two rays of light as a tribute to this nation's strength and unity in time of crisis.

    "The Homecoming" is another dramatic painting that honors those who serve, or have served our country as well as others who have gone beyond the call of duty. It portrays a young man in camos heading down the dusty road towards his hometown, but the print is filled with heartwarming symbolism, including a F-16 fighter, fireman, Mother Teresa, Martin Luther King, The Pentagon and Flight 93.

    Kelley will return to the military museum and library for a public display of his patriotic art on July 4th. The Invest in America's Veteran's Foundation plans a full day of activities at the museum that day, including a special dedication ceremony for the historic 37-star American flag, which is on loan to the museum, live music and tours of the military museum.

    Written by: Jim Zbick (Invest In America's Veterans Foundation Curator)

  • By Bob Harden. From Naples Florida Weekly, 4 July 2013

    In the days following Sept. 11, 2001, Naples artist Rick Kelley found himself at his easel creating what would become one of the most important and impactful series of art in his career. The piece, “On Freedom’s Wing,” would be the beginning of his “American Freedom Series.”

    Frustrated like most Americans with the cruelty that had been bestowed on his country, Rick felt he had to do something. The seemingly simple search to buy a flag for display at his house became an exhaustive ordeal; all stores were sold out of Old Glory. When Rick’s wife suggested that he paint a flag, he poured out “On Freedom’s Wing.”

    “Usually I have in my mind what I am going to paint before I start, but with this piece everything seemed to come automatically. It was like something divine was guiding my hand as I was painting,” the artist recalls. And when he finished painting the flag in the mountain, he adds, “I knew I had truly created something special.”

    He decided to make prints to sell and would donate 10 percent of all sales to the American Red Cross Liberty Disaster Relief Fund.

    “I knew I would sell a few prints that would make for a small donation,” he says. He’s still shocked that four months after ccompleting p“ the painting, he was able to present a check for $40,000 to the cause. “I’m so glad I could help out,” he says.

    Among those who proudly display “On in aJ Freedom’s Wing” their homes are actor Joe Montagna and Maj. Gen. Joe Engle. In 2003, Rick presented former President George Bush Sr. with a Master Edition canvas of the painting. Two years later, he met the former president in his Houston office to present him with Master Editions of “Reflections of Freedom” and “Liberty’s Flight,” the remaining pieces of the “American Freedom Series.”

    Rick began his quest to be an artist out of a love for nature when he was just 10 years old. He continued to paint through his studies at Eastern Montana University and in 1980 began painting full-time as a professional.

    Rick paints from his emotions and creates images that depict the beauty and mood of nature. An avid outdoorsman and naturalist, he donates much of his artwork to conservation fundraising efforts and other charitable organizations.

    His newest project entails giving Southwest Florida families of fallen soldiers of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq their choice of one of the three prints in his “American Freedom Series.” Find out more by calling him at (800) 949-4945 or by visiting

    Talking points with Rick Kelley

    Mentor: My high school art teacher, John Grengs.

    As a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up? I always wanted to be an artist.

    First job: At 14, I was a dishwasher at an Italian restaurant in Minnesota.

    One thing on your bucket list: Scuba diving for lost treasure with my son Adam.

    Next vacation destination: Whitefish, Mont., in August.

    Skill or talent you wish you had: I would have liked to play professional hockey or baseball. I was good at both, but I pursued my art instead.

    What makes you laugh: My children. They also make me cry tears of joy.

    Advice for kids: Love everyone and pray for your enemies

    Guilty pleasures: I don’t have any yet.

    Something you’ll never understand: Wow. So many things: How people can take from each other knowing that a greater satisfaction comes from giving. How the dignity of human life has become minimized to a point that our wants are more important than doing what’s right.

    Pet peeve: When someone leaves the cap off the toothpaste.

    What are you most proud of? My children, watching them grow in faith, values and morals.

    What the Paradise Coast really needs: More industry to help lessen the tax burden of its citizens.

    Favorite thing about the Paradise Coast: Saltwater fishing.

    What you miss about the Paradise Coast when you’re away: My kids, and the warmth when I do shows up north for too long.

  • From News-Press, 22 November 2013.
    In honor of Veterans Day, artist Rick Kelley donated five images from his “Patriotic Series” to veterans attending the Veterans Foundation open house Nov. 11 in Cape Coral.
    The print giveaway was part of Kelley's “Families of the Fallen” project that Kelley and private donors began more than a year ago to memorialize the loss of America’s heroes of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. Families of these soldiers were given their choice of one of six patriotic images from the“Patriotic Series” framed with a personalized nameplate.
    Kelley has given away over 130 of the “Patriotic Series” medium-sized prints.
    The art in this collection was inspired from the events of Sept. 11, 2001, and includes “On Freedom’s Wing,” “Liberties Flight,” “Reflections of Freedom,” “The Homecoming” “The Patriot” and “Coming Home.”
    Each medium-sized print is valued at $50.
    A set of the “Patriotic Series” master canvases are in the private art collections of both Presidents Bush.
    “After 9/11, we as a country showed great compassion for one another. That compassion is what we tend to forget in our everyday lives for each other. The soldiers and the families of these heroes have given so much unconditionally so we as a people can enjoy our freedom,” Kelley said. “I am hoping that by giving of my art to these families and soldiers it may spark a little of the compassion again for us to care for others that we may not even know.”
    In addition to the print donation, the Veterans Foundation, which houses a military library and museum, unveiled new pieces from the Revolutionary War.
    Kelley’s goal is to expand the effort nationwide, but needs to raise donations to cover framing costs
  • From Naples News, 7 November 2013.
    Artist Rick Kelley, of Cape Coral, will donate a choice of five images from his “Patriotic Series” to veterans and families of military service members who died in Afghanistan or Iraq.

    The print giveaway — from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Veterans Day, Monday, Nov. 11, at the Veterans Foundation open house at 4820 Leonard St. in Cape Coral — will be part of Kelley’s “Families of the Fallen” project.

    Kelley and donors began the project more than a year ago to memorialize Americans who died in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars.

    In addition to the print donation, the Veterans Foundation, which houses a military library and museum, will unveil new pieces from the Revolutionary War up to current conflicts. Entertainment will be provided by the Dixie Land Dirt band from 1 to 3 p. m.; and hot dogs, hamburgers, sides and beverages will be served for $5. All proceeds will be donated to the Veterans Foundation.

    For more information and to donate to the framing effort for veterans, call 800-949-4945.
  • herb and beverly halpernjohn FuentesLEFT: On Veterans Day, Cape Coral residents Veteran Herb Halpern, 82, and Beverly Halpern, 72, attended the Veteran's Foundation Open House in Cape Coral and stopped by Master Artist Rick Kelley's display to select a print from his "Patriotic Series."  Halpern was a Navy Seal and served in Korea and Vietnam. 

    RIGHT: Joey Fuentes, 5, (left front); Iraq Army Staff Sergeant SSG John Fuentes (left middle) and daughter, Brandi Fuentes 14, (left back)  view a patriotic print "On Freedom's Wing" with Master Artist Rick Kelley at the Veterans Foundation open house.

    To commemorate Veterans Day, Kelley donated a choice of five images from this collection to veterans.  The "Patriotic Series" was inspired from the events of September 11, 2001 and includes“On Freedom‘s Wing,” “Liberties Flight,” “Reflections of Freedom,” “The Patriot” and “Coming Home.” Each print is valued at $50.

    The print giveaway is part of Kelley's "Families of the Fallen" project that Kelley and private donors began more than a year ago.

    To date, Kelley has also given away over 130 of the “Patriotic Series” medium-sized framed prints with personalized nameplates to families who have lost soldiers in Afghanistan and Iraq. These prints are valued at $350.

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