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Model for Rockwell’s ‘Rosie the Riveter’ painting dies at 92

Mary Doyle Keefe posed with the painting in 2002.Jim Cole/AP File

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — The model for Norman Rockwell’s 1943 Rosie the Riveter painting that symbolized the millions of American women who went to work on the homefront during World War II has died. Mary Doyle Keefe was 92.

Mary Ellen Keefe says her mother died Tuesday in Simsbury, Connecticut, after a brief illness.

Keefe grew up in Arlington, Vermont, where she met Rockwell and posed for his painting when she was a 19-year-old telephone operator. The painting was on the cover of the Saturday Evening Post on May 29, 1943.

Although Keefe was petite, Rockwell’s Rosie the Riveter had large arms and shoulders. The painting shows Rosie sitting down in work overalls, with a rivet gun on her lap and her foot on a copy of Adolf Hitler’s manifesto ‘‘Mein Kampf.’’