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Richard Clemens Jr. Dead: Massachusetts Trooper Immortalized In Rockwell Painting Dies At 83

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NORMAN ROCKWELL
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BOSTON -- A retired Massachusetts state trooper who was a model for Norman Rockwell's 1958 Saturday Evening Post illustration, "The Runaway," has died.

Massachusetts State Police said 83-year-old retired Staff Sgt. Richard Clemens Jr. died Sunday after a brief illness.

Rockwell, Clemens' neighbor in the Berkshires town of Stockbridge, asked the trooper to pose for the illustration along with a local 8-year-old boy, Ed Locke. The work shows a trooper in a diner counseling a boy with a knapsack. State police reunited Clemens and Locke for a 50th anniversary celebration in 2008.

Police Col. Marian McGovern said the image shows "the highest ideal of police work: helping someone in need at a vulnerable moment."

Clemens lived in New York state in recent years. His funeral will be Friday in Clifton Park, N.Y.

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