Illinois Shop Owner Honors Veterans With ‘Standin’ Proud’ Museum

May 28, 2024
It features a Ford F-350 called Standin’ Proud, with hand painted art of soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan displayed over an American flag backdrop.

One shop owner in Bartos, Illinois, is using his business to show appreciation for veterans all year round, reports KSDK.

Carl’s 4WD and Performance Center has been in business for 47 years, and owner Carl Hills credits U.S. veterans with providing him the life he has now.

“Everything that has ever come through me has been because of the veterans,” said Hills.

He’s taken it upon himself to establish the Standin’ Proud Museum: an exhibit showcasing artifacts and relics from past wars and the soldiers who served in them. 

It features historic items–many of which were donated from families of soldiers–and its centerpiece, a Ford F-350 called Standin’ Proud, with hand painted art of soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan displayed over an American flag backdrop. Alongside the moving images are the names of each soldier who lost their lives in those wars, a total of 4,683 names that took 2,900 Sharpie pens to write.

The exhibit has been open to the public all year round, including yesterday’s Memorial Day.

“Just the concept of being so proud of the ones that have served and doing it in a different, unique way,” described Hills of the exhibit.

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