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Patrick Wyatt McKinley - A Portrait Unfinished



What: Patrick Wyatt McKinley - A Portrait Unfinished

When: October 20, 2011 at 5:30 p.m.

Where: YWCA, 5215 Colley Ave., Norfolk, VA


The Virginia Center for Public Safety sponsored an evening in memory of Patrick McKinley, the late son of Board member Jeanette Richardson. Patrick was murdered in front of their Denbigh home less than an hour into the new year in 2004.

"Patrick Wyatt McKinley - A Portrait Unfinished" focused on the young man as a promising artist whose future was snuffed out by gunfire. An exhibition in his honor was held at the YWCA, 5215 Colley Ave., Norfolk, VA on Thursday, October 20, 2011 at 5:30 p.m.

Patrick died on New Years Day, January 1, 2004 at approximately 12:45 a.m. in front of his family home, in what his mother related in a written piece as "...a chance encounter with a drunken, drugged-up but well armed high school dropout. The handgun was stolen; supposedly from a Navy man who moved to Ohio. The gun was easily obtained by this unemployed 18 year-old for about $200. It came with the Hydro-shock bullets (a type of hollowpoint)."

Visitors and supporters looked at Patrick's artwork and saw how gun violence cut short an art career with such great potential, as well as creating an unfillable hole in the lives of his friends and family.

At 6:15 p.m., a special presentation was made by those who love him and miss him. And in a separate room, information was provided by the VACPS about what can be done to eliminate tragedies in the future resulting from gun violence.

The artwork was grouped by the periods of Patrick's life along with photographs of him during those time frames. A video that was created shortly after his death was also shown. Most poignant is a self portrait that he was working on the night he died in which, when discovered afterward by his mother, the paint had not even dried yet.

A portrait unfinished - as was his life.

"Patrick Wyatt McKinley - A Portrait Unfinished" is a program of
VACPS' Advocacy Through the Arts committee.