FT LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – A vibrant piece of art is now on display in Fort Lauderdale in honor of a South Florida man killed at the hands of ISIS terrorists.READ MORE: Man Held Without Bond In Killing Of Baby, Babysitter In Coral Springs
The mixed media painting featuring pomegranates, an orchid and the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem was created with Steve Sotloff’s life in mind.
Sotloff’s own words from his time in captivity are woven into the artwork features the at the Greenspoon Marder Law Firm in Fort Lauderdale as part of its Community Arts Partnership.
“For us to be part of showcasing that piece means so much,” said Gerald Greenspoon.
Sotloff was killed last September, beheaded by ISIS terrorists in the Syrian desert.
The Pinecrest native had been in the region working as a freelance reporter.His mission was to tell the stories of the voiceless in conflict-torn parts of the world.
In the artwork meant to commemorate his life, the Prayer to Grant Peace is etched in the sky above Jerusalem.
In a letter smuggled out to his parents during his time in captivity, Sotloff wrote, “Everyone has two lives. The second one begins when you realize that you only have one.”READ MORE: Report: South Florida Counties Have High COVID Levels, Despite CDC Numbers
Those same words now memorialized in art.
After his death, his family created 2Lives- The Steven Joel Sotloff Memorial Foundation to provide support to journalists and their families affected by the realities of reporting from war-torn settings.
Artist Tracy Ellyn created the piece.
“By memorializing somebody this special and this brave in a work of art, it’s on step toward helping history to not repeat itself,” Ellyn said.
She said she had never met the Sotloff’s before creating the artwork.
Steven’s parents saw the piece in person for the first time Tuesday night.
“I feel very happy and sad at the same time. I really miss Steven,” said his mother, Shirley Sotloff.
His father, Arthur Sotloff, says looking at the painting is like looking at his son.MORE NEWS: COVID-19 Testing Site Finder
“I was overwhelmed and I kind of felt like my son was standing in front of me, that it was a part of him,” he said.