Rosie is dead.
Mary Doyle Keefe, the model for Norman Rockwell’s iconic 1943 Rosie the Riveter painting that symbolized the millions of American women who went to work on the home front during World War II, has died. She was 92.
Parenthood is a lifetime gig, you know, and if there is any comfort to be found in the passing of a cultural icon, it is that I have the rest of my life, still, that I might someday figure a way to explain to my daughter just how important Rosie the Riveter really was.
She changed everything. And perhaps this is an inadequate expression; therein lies the challenge. But still, it is no less true.
We’ve got some work to do, still, as a society. And, you know, we’ll get there, someday. Or kill ourselves trying. Thank you, Mary Doyle Keefe; your part in this story is etched in hearts and minds of generations, a permanent chapter in the collected tales of our American conscience.
Image note: Mary Doyle Keefe poses alongside Rosie the Riveter in undated photograph from Associated Press.
Collins, Dave. “Model for Rockwell’s Rosie the Riveter Painting Dies”. ABC News. 22 April 2015.