Larabess donate MFD print to Heritage Center


In 2008, Laura Larabee (far right) was commissioned to paint a piece of artwork depicting departed Monticello firefighters Tom Sauser and Richmond Kromminga. Larabee had several prints made of her painting, and recently donated a framed print to the Monticello Heritage and Cultural Center. The print will be on display for all to enjoy. Accepting the donation are Heritage board members Tiffany Bacon and Kaye Junion. (Photo by Pete Temple)
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Staff report

     In 2008, Laura Larabee of Monticello was commissioned by the Monticello Fire Department to capture departed firefighters Richmond Kromminga and Tom Sauser at the last fire both men fought together. The painting shows both men at a garage fire in June 2005.

     The original painting is on display inside the Monticello Fire Station. Larabee also made several prints and gave those to various members of the fire department, as well as family of Kromminga and Sauser. Kromminga passed away in 2005; Sauser in 2007.

     Larabee also made herself an extra print, and recently came across the framed print while looking through her inventory at home. Not wanting to just do away with it, Larabee permanently donated the print to the Monticello Heritage and Cultural Center for display.

     “We wanted people to enjoy it,” said Larabee’s husband, Phil. “The print was just sitting in our home.”

     The Larabees said this way so many people could enjoy it, as a way to honor the fallen firefighters.

     “It’s part of our local history,” added Phil. “It’s all about the Sausers and Krommingas and what it means to them. It’s a special tribute.”

     On behalf of the Heritage Center, board member Bob Hendricks offered, “We would really like to stress our gratitude to the Larabee family and others who have donated items to the Heritage Center.”

     The print will be showcased alongside the MFD history display, located just inside the entrance.

     “Along with this print, you can find information on not only Mr. Sauser and Mr. Kromminga, but also other local heroes who have so graciously served the community,” added Hendricks. “Hopefully their service and stories will inspire the next generation of firefighters.”

     The Heritage Center is open on Tuesdays from 6 to 8 p.m. and Sundays from 1 to 5 p.m. You can also follow them on Facebook.

 

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