From The Bench

Welcome to Rod Mench Studios' Blog...'From the Bench', where we will be sharing informational articles about the Generational Awards and Custom Creations we sell. We will also be sharing industry news as well as interesting articles on a variety of topics. Thanks for Stopping in and please 'Like Us' on Facebook!!!
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Merry Christmas!

I'd like to start out by wishing you all a Merry Christmas and a happy, healthy, peaceful and prosperous New Year.

We're starting to roll out the new designs. Currently available is the Ol' Bill and the mini Air Force Chief ornament. Let's start with Ol' Bill.

For years, I had been asked to do Ol' Bill. I didn't think much about it. Patterson was already doing it, and Terry was a friend of mine. But, after doing some research this past year, I now understand why the Army Cav guys love this figure – it's iconic.

This figure is based on a drawing by Frederic Remington back in1890. Remington was at the camp of the 3rd Cav. They were stationed in Tampa, FL; the regiment was staging for the Santiago campaign (San Juan). Mr. Remington was on his way to cover the war going on in Cuba for Harper's Weekly. Turns out, he was a good friend of one of the commanders of the 3rd Cav. While Remington was there, he noticed a non-commissioned officer by the name of Sgt. John Lannen. The sergeant was an excellent rider and cut quite the figure. Remington viewed the sergeant as the epitome of a cavalaryman. To make a long story short, Remington immortalized Sgt. Lannon in the now-famous drawing: a grizzled, tough cavalryman- a white haired man cradling his weapon. Seriously, who hasn't seen this?

So, after researching this, I was inspired to create my version. Tough, self-assured and reliable – something befitting of the Cavalry. This piece is in stock and ready to go.

The mini Air Force Chief ornament was a no brainer. I've had countless chiefs over the last few years tell me about how the Chief symbol is now considered politically incorrect. How can pride, dedication, and strength, along with a dignified Native American Chief symbol, be politically incorrect?? Air Force Chiefs have told me numerous times that this symbol is one of respect, and I have to agree with them. Many still want our Chiefs' bust, but are unable to display it in their office, or purchase them with any government funds. So, I came up with the ornament. Yes, it can be used as a Christmas ornament, but it can also be hung from a rear view mirror in the car. Inexpensive, yet it still has all the detail. That way, when the chief drives through the front gate on base, everyone there knows who runs it! '-)

FINALLY, we sent the rest of the prototypes to my manufacturer: Hambone, the Army engineers' mule, and the Doghandler. Hambone will have all the detail and historical accuracy. The Doghandler will have the grit and realism. I'm expecting those to arrive early 2017, probably around the end of February/ early March.

Keep checking back for photos on those 2. For our retailers, keep an eye out for our newsletter. We'll have pictures and an ETA for those two pieces soon.

Have a happy, healthy and prosperous New Year.


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