To memorialize him, Main Street DeLand commissioned the mural, which will join with other scenes from DeLand’s past on downtown walls. The organization put out a call for artists and chose Palm Coast artist Robert Ammon from eight submissions.
After reading up on Rufus and meeting with his children and others who knew the late DeLand resident, Ammon had a lot of inspiration with which to work with. The painter’s piece is comprised of panels, each offering a glimpse into a part of Pinkney’s life. There’s a portrait of Pinkney and his son and daughter, a panel that shows Rufus playing the harmonica and a panel with a big shoe on which his reflection can be seen.
Rufus may have left DeLand, but he will never leave the hearts of those who knew him and interacted with him. He not only made shoes shine brighter, but he also made lives shine brighter. Now, his legacy will live on.