A press release published by the Rainelle Community Development Corporation (RCDC) earlier this week contained some bad news regarding the progress of the Run For The Wall mural in the town of Rainelle.
Mural artist Tom Acosta had to undergo triple bypass heart surgery and will be unable to complete the massive project in time for this year’s Run For The Wall motorcade. The original unveiling was scheduled for May 23, to coincide with the arrival of the bikers to the town, but pending on Acosta’s recovery, the unveiling will have to be rescheduled for later this summer.
Mayor Andrea Pendleton and RCDC President Christopher Clay said in the release, “We appreciate your understanding of this situation and know your thoughts and prayers are with Tom and his family at this time. We will continue to keep you updated on his progress. Again, we appreciate so much your support to the Rainelle Community Development Center and to the town of Rainelle.”
This year will be the 31st year that the Run For The Wall motorcade passes through Rainelle. The group, which is composed of motorcyclists, spans from California to Washington, DC, in an epic cross-country journey intended to “recognize the sacrifices and contributions made by all veterans who have served our nation.” The motto of the group is, “We ride for those who can’t.”
The mural project has been underway since the summer of 2018, when the RCDC board approved a “patriotic mural project” for the town. Acosta was contracted to paint the mural, which will honor all past, present, and future military members as well as positively promote Rainelle. The RCDC proceeded to initiate a fundraising campaign to cover the costs of the project, and numerous businesses, charitable foundations, and private donors stepped up to help pay for the project. The Greenbrier County Commission also stepped in to help fund the mural.
The gigantic piece of art will ultimately cover a wall that is 76 feet long and 24 feet wide, and will contain patriotic symbols such as eagles, important government buildings, and more. Located in a central part of town, it will be hard to miss once it’s completed.