Mending a Broken Heart

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Project by DeLayne Peck posted 09-13-2012 07:13 AM 3643 views 6 times favorited 17 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Some projects take on great meaning, significance, and irony. When our daughter-in-law-to-be planned to visit us for the first time, my wife and I wanted to give her something extrodinarily special.

An Army Sergeant 1st class and Chinook helicopter Crew Chief Instructor, she was just home from her deployment to Afghanistan. She had just concluded her eighth deployment including two combat tours, Iraq and Afghanistan. She came home without our son, her finacee. Also a Chinook Crew Chief, he was lost with 29 other Americans, his Air Guard crew and Navy Seals. Insurgents shot down their Chinook during a night interdiction mission.

No sympathy sought, this is a story about recovery. When the Curly Claro Walnut block I ordered arrived just a week before her arrival, it was encased in wax. Inside was gorgeous, wet wood. Desperate and fearful, I crafted the bandsaw heart against my better judgement. It was a beautiful presentation piece that withered and broke within a month. On a subsequent visit, I retrieved and began restoration of the keepsake.

Today, the walnut heart is back on a veteran’s night stand, restored, and full again. Its indued with far greater significance and meaning. Three withered, broken human hearts also followed a hard path to restoration and recovery.

-- DJ Peck, Lincoln Nebraska. Lord, keep your arm around my shoulder and your hand over my mouth.

17 comments so far

View Ken90712's profile


18123 posts in 4678 days

#1 posted 09-13-2012 07:42 AM

Grerat project and well done!!!! Sure she loves it. Our prayers to you & your familly as well… God Bless!

USS Enterprise CVN-65 84-89

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

View Hawaiilad's profile


3386 posts in 4510 days

#2 posted 09-13-2012 07:53 AM

What a lovely box and gift you gave…the gift of your son for our Nation. God Bless your Family

-- Larry in Hawaii,

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

30679 posts in 3828 days

#3 posted 09-13-2012 09:23 AM

Beautiful box. No words for your loss other than “thank you & may God bless”

-- Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View JT23325's profile


168 posts in 3637 days

#4 posted 09-13-2012 12:04 PM

A beautiful box, made even more beautiful by the story it tells. Thank you for sharing!!

-- Jeff, Ability will never catch up with the demand for it. - Malcolm Forbes

View HillbillyShooter's profile


5811 posts in 3782 days

#5 posted 09-13-2012 01:17 PM

Great job and a heartfelt thank you to you and your family for your son’s service to our great nation—may his memory and the memory of all our fallen soldiers be forever cherished and never forgotten.

-- John C. -- "Firearms are second only to the Constitution in importance; they are the peoples' liberty's teeth." George Washington

View Jim Jakosh's profile (online now)

Jim Jakosh

27794 posts in 4595 days

#6 posted 09-13-2012 01:52 PM

That is a very beautiful box, DeLayne. It will be an heirloom!
I hope you signed it!!

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View DeLayne Peck's profile

DeLayne Peck

669 posts in 3691 days

#7 posted 09-13-2012 04:26 PM

My wife and I have reformed a family reformed around her. She is a wonderful, loving, new daughter. I did sign and date it with the inscription “Dad.”

Normally, the bottom and lid insert are made from the interior cut out. Those pieces dried beyond repair and I had to sub in other walnut. I’ll never tell how many hours went into that project.

Thanks, LJs, for all the kind comments.

-- DJ Peck, Lincoln Nebraska. Lord, keep your arm around my shoulder and your hand over my mouth.

View WoodenFrog's profile


2737 posts in 4403 days

#8 posted 09-13-2012 07:05 PM

All I can say is that is Beautiful! very Beautiful!
Thank you for sharing it and a sad but beautiful story.
Thank you to you and your family, so sorry for the loss of your son but very thankful for his service to our country.
Without him and all our great service men and women, My family and I would not be free to live the way we do!
Thank you and God bless.

-- Robert B. Sabina, Ohio.....

View robdem's profile


381 posts in 4096 days

#9 posted 09-14-2012 12:25 AM

The box is beautiful sorry for the loss of your son

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 4180 days

#10 posted 09-14-2012 01:33 AM

The story broke my heart as well but you did an amazing job fixing this one. My best wishes to your family including your new ‘daughter’.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View Bobsboxes's profile


1674 posts in 4153 days

#11 posted 09-14-2012 02:22 AM

A truely heartbreaking story, my heart goes out to your family and new daughter.

-- Bob in Montana. Kindness is the Language the blind can see and deaf can hear. - Mark Twain

View doordude's profile


1085 posts in 4472 days

#12 posted 09-14-2012 02:53 AM

great recover on the broken heart fix. and great thanks to your son for his service. and very sorry for your loss.

View Fishinbo's profile


11362 posts in 3665 days

#13 posted 09-14-2012 02:05 PM

Your son. Our hero. God bless you.
The box is endearing.

View Pdub's profile


926 posts in 4669 days

#14 posted 09-17-2012 04:14 PM

Beautiful box. Nice repair job, you can’t tell it was ever broken. Sorry for your loss, and a huge thank you to your son and new daughter. The U.S. would be a different place without brave soldiers like them!

-- Paul, North Dakota, USAF Ret.

View Roger's profile


21055 posts in 4293 days

#15 posted 09-30-2012 01:26 PM

Wow! Beautiful story, and an awesome heart box. Thank them both for their service to our country.

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed. [email protected]

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