10th Mountain veteran, Jacques Parker in Telluride

10th Mountain veteran, Jacques Parker in Telluride

Download Jacques Parker, 10th Mtn Div [download file to hear Jacques Parker talk about his experience with the 10th Mtn in WWII]

IMG_3588 I had the unique opportunity to talk to a living legend in my Telluride living room on July 3. Jacques Parker had agreed to an interview, and what a treat to hear from one of the participants what it was like to be at Camp Hale (near Leadville, CO for the uninitiated) for training, how he came to be a combat artist, about the camaraderie among the men of the 10th Mountain Division during the Second World War, and generally to have a good conversation with a real gentleman.

Fourteen years ago, Beth and George Gage, Telluride locals and well known documentary filmmakers made “Fire on the Mountain” about the 10th. The film is being screened at 6:00 pm, Monday, July 6, at the Sheridan Opera House. The movie is the highlight of Telluride Mountainfilm’s Summer fundraiser.

Poster_parker_soldier_large George Gage told me it was their dream to have surviving members of the 10th here for the 15th anniversary of “Fire” but time marches on and many of the veterans felt this year might be the last time they could count on visiting our high mountain valley, so it was decided to honor them this year. They participated in Saturday’s July 4th celebration, and will be featured guests at the Opera House on the 6th.

Jacques Parker’s “day job” was sergeant of a machine gun squad, but he packed paper and pencils, a sketch pad and pens or brushes when his load permitted, and documented the life of a combat soldier in the Italian Alps at the end of the War. His drawings have been seen in magazines and posters for decades, and are the foundation for the poster honoring the men of the 10th seen on this page.

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