“Vanquishing The Invisible”
An Independent Portrait Project  by James R Morrison and J Mara Morrison
Vanquishing The Invisible will be displayed at the California State Fair during Military and
Veteran Appreciation Day, July 18th continuing on July 19th in the Fine Arts Building 7
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Thank you for your interest in “Vanquishing the Invisible”. From the beginning, you recognized the value and importance of bringing these portraits and stories to the public. We truly appreciate your support and we look forward to seeing you at a future event.
Nancy Musso
U.S. Army
My name is Nancy Jessenia Vanessa Pancán-Musso. I was born in Gualán-Zacapa, Guatemala and raised in Auburn, CA. I am the oldest of five siblings. All the men on my father’s side have served in the military for generations. My father served in the Guatemalan Special Forces, Kaibil. He inspired me to serve in the United States military as he and my family did for their country. I was the first and only female in my family to have served in any military branch. My service was very unexpected and not very supported by my family, but they eventually were very proud of me.
I joined the Army at the age of eighteen in 2006 and served until 2013. My Military Occupational Specialty (MOS) was a Chemical Biological Radiological Nuclear (CBRN) Specialist. During my military time, I was deployed to Iraq. During my deployment, I realized the struggles women around the world encounter on a daily basis. I have seen it in my home country of Guatemala and now in Iraq, Qatar, and Kuwait. Seeing the cultural expectations of women made me appreciate my life in the United States. I enjoyed my time in the military and would not trade it for anything in the world. I was exposed to many different types of people and learned about their cultures. Something I would not have learned in the small town of Auburn.
After my service, I attended Sierra College in Rocklin, California. My goal at the time was to pursue my interest in trauma therapy to help other veterans cope with combat stress understanding the toll it takes on our military members. But life can change suddenly as I discovered when I met and married my husband.
We are currently living the farm life trading the hustle and bustle of the city for the quiet backwoods country living of Kentucky. I enjoy herding the chickens and feeding our animals. I do Christian counseling for couples with my husband. On the weekends you can find me teaching Sunday School to our local youth and singing with the worship team. I hope to continue to help others with the faith in Jesus Christ; a faith that helped me find the inner peace I needed to overcome the trauma from the military.  
We received the highest praise on the surveys and in personal comments affirming this project touches viewers in a deep and profound way. Their use of words like, “powerful”, “enlightening”, “passionate”, “thought-provoking”, and (we really liked this one) “take it national” reinforces our belief in this critically important exhibit.
However, “Vanquishing the Invisible” cannot continue - or grow - its outreach without your support. We would be honored if you would take a moment to help fund this project.
There’s so much more we can accomplish if we do it together. Your support will help others attend future exhibits and continue the outreach to new audiences.
Thanks to you, these stories and portraits are possible.

If you would like to honor Women Veterans and help educate future generations on the legacy of women in the military, please DONATE

“Women Veterans are often assumed to be spouses of a veteran. We are on a mission to change that assumption. Working together, we can not only change perceptions but bring to light the vast achievements and contributions our women veterans make every day. Impacting a woman veteran’s life not only positively changes her life, but also her family’s and the community in which she lives.”         Melissa Washington, Founder of Women Veterans Alliance
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