Meet Paul Ortiz, Aurora Public Schools bus driver by day and talented pencil portrait artist by night. He has drawn the faces of many iconic figures, but his latest masterpiece of the late Edna and John W. Mosley has steered his artistic career in a more meaningful direction.
Lieutenant Colonel John W. Mosley was a member of the Tuskegee Airmen, the first African American military aviators in the United States Armed Forces. His wife, Edna, was the first African American to serve on the Aurora City Council.
The portrait is displayed in the Edna and John W. Mosley P-8 school alongside a bio of the dynamic duo. Ortiz hopes that when students look upon it, they are inspired by The Mosley’s story of hard work, perseverance and dedication to their community.
Ortiz, who retired after 26 years in the U.S. Navy, had the honor of personally presenting the original artwork to Lt. Col. Mosley before he passed away.
The Denver Chapter of Tuskegee Airmen, Inc. contracted Ortiz to draw all 19 of the documented Tuskegee Airmen of Colorado. The artwork will be displayed at Wings Over the Rockies Air & Space Museum and two military history museums in Colorado Springs.
Learn more about Ortiz and view a gallery of his incredible pencil portraits here!