Veteran Portrait Project

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Veterans from across North Dakota are getting their faces and stories added to the Veterans' Portrait Project. The nationwide effort features images of service men and women. The photos were being taken at the VFW Post in Bismarck.

The Veterans Portrait Project was started by ten-year veteran Stacy Pearsall from South Carolina, she says she ran into problems after her service ended because people didn't recognize her as a veteran.

"When somebody asks you to conjure up in your mind what a veteran looks like, my face is not the one that you're going to think of. By presenting the veterans' community in a different way like through the project, and exhibitions, and storytelling it allows people to expand their minds," said Pearsall.

The effort is touring all fifty states to give people a better idea of who veterans are.

"I look forward to being able to share a little bit of my story. To share part of the history of where I was in the Navy, and where I've been, and where I am now," said Kevin Tengesdal.

Stacy had served in the Air Force as a combat photographer and was wounded overseas.

"It's cathartic, because I too have my emotional traumas that I've experienced in combat, and still deal with and grapple with every day, and by hearing their successes and also sometimes their struggles makes me feel human, and that I'm not alone," said Pearsall.

She has photographed more than 7,500 veterans nationwide and only has 17 states left on the list.

​Stacy plans to hit all fifty states by Veterans Day. Her next stop is in Missoula, Mont.