HATTIESBURG, Miss. (WDAM) - Friday was a glorious occasion for the Hub City as a new mural called “Courage” was unveiled.
A Hattiesburg Veterans Committee representative defined Courage as “Not stepping back into the shadows when trouble comes, but stepping forward into the light and speaking up.”
There was a ribbon-cutting ceremony, which included speakers from leaders in the community and people who played a role in making it happen, especially the artist himself, River Prince, owner of Prince Sign Company.
Prince said they began planning and designing for the mural six months ago.
“We’ve been out here all of February,” Prince said of painting it.
Prince was overwhelmed to be a part of something so major.
“Its so much bigger than us, and I am honored to be a part of it” Prince said.
The mural features a picture of the legendary American Aviator Ensign Jesse L. Brown. Brown was a Hattiesburg native who went on to make history and become the first Black pilot in the United State Navy.
Brown’s daughter, Pamela knight, was there for the unveiling Friday on behalf of her father.
“My father often heard the word ‘can’t’ and was constantly being told what he should or couldn’t become, so ‘can’t’ became the catalyst and motivating factor for my father to navigate unchartered territory,” Knight said.
The mural also pays homage to the heroes of Hattiesburg that have been working the front lines during the pandemic, our healthcare workers.
Mayor Toby Barker described it as a mural that “depicts those individuals and institutions that made Hattiesburg strong, made us a beacon of hope, and perseverance and advancement for the state and country.”
The mural sits inside of Veterans Memorial Park free for all to go see.