'Paint the Trail' artist pays tribute to fallen officers Clayton, Lewi…


Two months after their deaths, a brand new mural in downtown Sanford honors two Central Florida officers who misplaced their lives within the line of obligation.

  • ‘Paint the Path’ artist honors Lt. Debra Clayton, Deputy Norm Lewis
  • Jeff Sonksen painted portraits on show in downtown Sanford
  • Mural additionally consists of 6 fallen Seminole Sheriff’s deputies

The painted tribute to Orlando Police Lt. Debra Clayton and Orange County Deputy Norman Lewis went up on the Historic Sanford Welcome Middle originally of March.

The mural, by “Paint The Path” artist Jeff Sonksen, additionally honors the six Seminole County Sheriff’s deputies who’ve died within the line of obligation over the course of the company’s historical past.

Sonksen didn’t know Clayton or Lewis, however he stated their deaths in January hit him onerous.

“I simply by no means thought I’d see a day the place one thing like that occurred,” Sonksen stated. “It simply looks like the nation is dropping respect for cops, which is simply so odd to me.”

So Sonksen reduce some wooden, picked up his brushes and began portray.

“I simply don’t need to see us maintain going within the course we’re going, and I assume I needed to make a press release: Respect the police and respect the courageous,” Sonksen stated.

Sonksen related all the work of the regulation enforcement officers with an American flag.

“They put their lives on the road on a regular basis for individuals they don’t even know, and other people ought to be grateful and grateful that we have now women and men who’re prepared to try this type of a job,” he stated.

“I do know I wouldn’t need to do it. I’m only a citizen with a paintbrush, and usually I paint completely satisfied stuff and really feel-great things, and that’s sort of my factor.”

Sonksen is well-known in Seminole County for his work of celebrities hooked up to fences alongside nature trails.

“I would like individuals to take a look at what I’ve painted and really feel higher, or one way or the other be motivated or really feel uplifted,” Sonksen stated.

With these work, he needs individuals to point out respect.

“I can’t think about dwelling in a world the place there weren’t cops. We’d like them identical to we’d like firemen and docs and everybody else.”

Sonksen stated the response has been overwhelming.

“There’s been fairly a number of cops which have messaged me, and are available out right here and needed to get an image of it, they usually needed to see it in individual,” he stated.

The work are anticipated to stay on show on the Historic Sanford Welcome Middle in downtown Sanford till the top of April. Sonksen says the Seminole County Sheriff’s Workplace will get the work for his or her fallen deputies. He hasn’t determined but the place the work of Clayton and Lewis will probably be positioned completely.



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