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A decade on and Pro’s still with us

Friday, 25th March, 2016

Pro Hart passed away almost 10 years ago, but his family and his legacy are still going strong. PICTURE: AAP Pro Hart passed away almost 10 years ago, but his family and his legacy are still going strong. PICTURE: AAP

By Darrin Manuel

On Easter Monday it will be 10 years since the city lost its most renowned artist, but the legacy of the man known simply as “Pro” continues to grow through both his family and his art.

The story of Kevin “Pro” Hart is well known to most locals, as he rose from a humble miner with an interest in painting to a celebrated artist whose works would achieve pride of place in prestigious collections around the world.

Speaking ahead of the sombre anniversary of his passing, his wife Raylee said she and their family were coping well.

“I’m going really good, it’s just gone so quickly,” she said.

While her lifelong companion is never far from her thoughts, she said his passing had brought about a merciful end to his difficult battle with Motor Neurone Disease.

“Of course I miss him, but I love him too much to wish him back, the way he was.”

Raylee said she still has plenty of love in her life thanks to an ever-growing family, which includes numerous children, grandchildren and two great-grandchildren, with a third great-grandchild “set to arrive at any time.”

On the artistic front, Raylee said it was a great honour to see Council rename the prestigious Outback Open Art Prize the “Pro Hart Outback Art Prize.”

“I think that’s great, because that was Pro - he was always encouraging the local artists,” said Raylee.

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