Events and News

VanKirk Memorialized with Sculpture

September 14, 2017

Dallas “Pete” VanKirk was honored with a sculpture that was lit during a ceremony in Perry, Iowa.

VanKirk died in August 2016 and was the CEO of Progressive Foundry. The sculpture, named “Born of Fire” depicts a ladle pouring molten metal. According to a report in The Perry News, LED lights project from the base of the scupture, which is 15 ft. tall. The sculpture was commissioned by the Art of the Prairie committee.

“He was the CEO of Progressive Foundry, and they wanted something to illustrate how much he cared and the love he poured into his community. Immediately the idea of a crucible pouring a stream of molten metal came to mind,” artist John Brommel told TV station WHO.

VanKirk and his family have been prominent parts of the Perry community, including making donations to field renovations and endowments at a local community college.

The light switch was thrown by VanKirk’s grandson, Jackson.

“I am so very glad that I was able to get to know Pete VanKirk,” said Lynn Ubben, according to The Perry News. “We sat at a few wrestling meets together, and he just beamed when talking about his family and the Perry schools and community.”