“Ute Warrior Chief”, created by artist and Lehi educator Jerime Hooley, now stands as a centerpiece at the Fort Duchesne Ute Indian Tribe Veteran Memorial Park. Photo courtesy of MaKay Hooley

FORT DUCHESNE, UT—Nearly five years after the Ute Tribe extended an invitation to create the sculpture, artist and Lehi native Jerime Hooley’s 13-foot bronze piece finally came to life. The sculpture, “Ute Warrior Chief” was unveiled at a ceremony held on July 2, 2016 in Fort Duchesne. Now a major feature of the Fort Duchesne Ute Indian Tribe Veteran Memorial Park, Hooley’s sculpture demonstrates how patience and hard work can result in a work of art that will last for generations.  “The tribe wanted to start with its most ancient Veterans, going back to a Ute warrior chief,” said Hooley. The unveiling was one of many future art pieces to be commissioned to honor additional Veterans at the memorial, he added.

A crowd gathers to take part in the unveiling of Lehi native and artist Jerime Hooley’s 13-foot bronze statue “Ute Warrior Chief” during a ceremony held July 2, 2016. Photo courtesy of MaKay Hooley
A crowd gathers to take part in the unveiling of Lehi native and artist Jerime Hooley’s 13-foot bronze statue “Ute Warrior Chief” during a ceremony held July 2, 2016. Photo courtesy of MaKay Hooley

Hooley explained that years ago, the Ute Tribal Elder Bob Chapoose travelled the nation’s Veteran monuments to find the right artist for his vision. After seeing Hooley’s Korean War Veteran art in Cedar City, Chapoose knew the long-time Lehi High School art teacher could capture his vision of honoring the tribe.

According to www.ubmedia.biz, Chapoose said, “My grandfather and all the old Indian people used to tell me about these warriors—what they did. It (the memorial park) connects my life back to them.”

Jerime Hooley (center) presents his 13-foot bronze statue “Ute Warrior Chief” with Ute Tribal Elders Bob Chapoose (left) and Dolan Sorenson (right) at the unveiling ceremony held July 2, 2016 at the Fort Duchesne Ute Indian Tribe Veteran Memorial Park. Photo courtesy of MaKay Hooley
Jerime Hooley (center) presents his 13-foot bronze statue “Ute Warrior Chief” with Ute Tribal Elders Bob Chapoose (left) and Dolan Sorenson (right) at the unveiling ceremony held July 2, 2016 at the Fort Duchesne Ute Indian Tribe Veteran Memorial Park. Photo courtesy of MaKay Hooley

According to Hooley, “The whole idea of art is to help us understand the human condition. It’s a fun thing for me to honor those who have served us.”

Both videos and photos of Hooley’s artwork can be seen online via his Facebook page. Lehi art fans can simply type “Jerime Hooley” into the Facebook search bar to see “Ute Warrior Chief” evolve from concept to reality.

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