In 2010, 8-year U.S. Navy Veteran & entrepreneur, Michael Hyacinthe was connected by a mutual professor to artist/designer, Tyler Way. When the two met for coffee, they quickly realized the gap between the military & creative worlds.
At a local Veterans event, Hyacinthe met a severely-wounded U.S. Marine & his full-time nurse. Paralyzed from the neck down & unable to speak, the 20-something year old Marine shared his story through a special alphanumeric communication code that was translated by his nurse. Hyacinthe learned of his passion for t-shirts & asked the Marine if he would like to design his own. Seeing the larger-than-life grin immediately come across his face, Hyacinthe called Way & asked if he’d be willing to co-design a shirt with this Vet.
Once the power behind that creative process was realized, the HERO[series] was born, sparking an annual design series that pairs a Veteran with an artist for the purpose to share their story with the world.
The driving mission of [HAS HEART] is to provide a therapeutic creative outlet for Veterans, enlist the creative community to utilize their talents to serve, & to create a channel of communication with the civilian population for these Veterans’ stories to be shared & better understood.