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An American Spirit

This is my very close friend here in Cody. His name is Greg Koschtial. Leigh and I met him in 2004 when he was outbid on my pistol piece that was up for auction at the Buffalo Bill History Center. The next day, we came into his store and I gave him a signed print I had. A few weeks later, a beautiful sterling silver, handmade bison pin with a 22ct. gold horn arrived in my mailbox. Greg is a master craftsman jeweler. We soon became really good friends after that. Just before we moved here in 2007, Greg lost his left leg in a terrible motorcycle accident. He was riding near Jackson Hole, WY with a friend, and a friend of his friend. Greg spotted a large bull bison near the road and he pulled off on the berm to wait until the others caught up. The friend of a friend, wasn’t paying attention because he was standing up on his bike taking pictures and he didn’t see Greg. He slammed into his fiberglass bags on Greg’s Honda Gold Wing bike. They exploded into big pieces of sharp razors that cut his leg almost completely off. Thank God an EMS guy, and a nurse happened to be driving by. If it weren’t for them, he would have bled out in minutes. After a ton of surgeries, he now walks with a high-tech, U.S. Flag-decorated leg. He never, ever complains. I don’t know how he does it. This is a guy who survived Vietnam without a scratch and to come home years later to have this thing happen, it’s just heartbreaking!

In 2010, a friend of Greg’s took several photos of him. He is Andrew Hogarth, a world famous photographer from Scotland. In my oil painting, to commemorate the incident and the “American Spirit” that he is, I painted a running herd of American bison reflected in his sunglasses. What inspiration he is!!

This painting is traditional oils on Ampersand Gessobord Masonite. The finished size is 14″ x 20″.

Original is sold.

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