Help a Marine get back in the shop

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Forum topic by MichaelAgate posted 01-21-2013 04:51 AM 1291 views 1 time favorited 2 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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398 posts in 3663 days

01-21-2013 04:51 AM

Topic tags/keywords: timothy fallon help get a marine back in the shop wounded warrior donate


Matthew and I gave a donation. Perhaps you can too. Read below.

Help a Marine Get Back In The Shop
by frank | on January 11th, 2013 | 7 comments
There are times in a man’s life when an event defines him, but if the event is a challenge to his very being and a threat to his freedom, then he must defeat or overcome that which stands in his way. One might think this only applies to our Armed Forces personnel. It can apply to anyone in life, in general as well. But when a person serves in the military and rejoins civilian life because of an injury during his service to our country, that event not only defines him in the public eye, but can also defy him being back in public life and from his true abilities, just by the nature of the disability situation. Today we try to believe there is nothing we cannot overcome through technology, perseverance and hard work, but sometimes we need a little understanding, patience and a little help from our friends.

The phrase has been coined, “Once a Marine, Always a Marine”. In this case, the Marine is 1st Lieutenant Timothy Fallon USMC and his new fight to get back into the woodshop. So stating, “Once a woodworker, Always a woodworker” applies here. You see, Timothy has been blinded through his service injury while fighting in Marjah, Afghanistan. He lost his site after an enemy improvised explosive device detonated on November 18, 2010. He has minimal light perception in his left eye and his right eye over time has improved to see shapes in the daylight. As Timothy states, “Imagine holding a straw up to your eyeball, and what you do see through the straw, is blurred at best.” His doctors have indicated that this is most likely the most improvement he will ever have. To read up on Timothy, you can read his Biography or simply Google his name, 1st Lieutenant Timothy Fallon and you will get many hits, because he has been reported on as a hero. He is involved giving speeches to his fellow Marines and Wounded Warriors, and he is also visiting the halls of Walter Reed National Military Medical Center at Bethesda, Maryland were he gives tips to the architects for the newly remodeled medical center about ways to improve the walkways around the grounds for the sight challenged military personnel.

Timothy, however is not woodworking challenged. Growing up with a family of Marine woodworkers and carpenters, his knowledge is only circumvented by having proper machinery which he has relearned to use while in rehabilitation at the VA CBRC Rehab in Chicago. There, he was reintroduced to “blind woodworking”. Sounds crazy but Timothy quickly learned from the instructors that doing complex projects with normal woodshop machines is only as dangerous as you make it.

When blind, each cut and segment of work just needs a little extra planning in order to be done correctly and safely. Furthermore, many after-market pieces of safety equipment will dramatically increase the safety and usability of standard machines for blind woodworkers. The one problem Timothy is having now is procuring all the equipment to get a reasonable shop in order. He cannot, unfortunately, utilize a communal shop anywhere because he needs to be absolutely aware of where each piece of equipment is, how they are all set up and how all the safety features work. Timothy is trying to get a shop going in his garage, which has plenty of space, but such an initial financial investment is overwhelming.

Below left, Timothy with his first bowl (segmented) he made at the Blind Woodworking Class during his rehab at the Hines Center for the Blind VA Hospital in Chicago, and (right) Lt. Fallon testing the newly designed walkways for the visually impaired at Walter Reed.

The Patriot Woodworker with John Morris is trying to come to Timothy’s aid in support of his quest. Won’t you join this quest adventure in helping LT Fallon for all he has done in serving our country? Here’s how YOU can make a difference. Please click on this Operation link to help a fine Marine and a Great Guy!

That’s Operation: Help A Marine Get Back In The Shop

I spoke with John Morris of The Patriot Woodworker and he told The Woodworking Adventures Blog that they are coming down to the final days of their project to help this Marine get back into a shop so he can continue what he loves to do, turning wood!

Please donate funds or tools or machinery to this worthy cause. The Patriot Woodworker will be taking donations for Lt. Fallon through the rest of January 2013. Your help is greatly imperative and appreciated. If you know of any vendor who would like to help, please notify them of this Operation. The vendor’s efforts will be rewarded by free advertising within the Patriot woodworking community.

To Donate and for all the Details, you may also click on this link,

-- Michael and Matthew

2 replies so far

View John Morris's profile

John Morris

28 posts in 4106 days

#1 posted 01-21-2013 03:51 PM

Michael and Matthew, thank you very much on behalf of our Marine Lt. Fallon and our woodworking community The Patriot Woodworker for spreading the word.
We are closing in on the last two weeks of our project to get this Marine back up and running. He lost his sight in an IED explosion in Helmand Province Afghanistan. He was a woodworker before he signed on to protect us and our country, and he still is a woodworker, but with a different challenge. Lt Fallon is a turner, he loves turning. Our biggest push at this point is a lathe. If you are interested in donating, new machinery and tools is great, lightly used machinery and tools is fine too, and of course we are collecting monetary donations as well, we will accumulate the funds from now until the end of January and we will purchase a gift card for Timothy to give to him. We have done pretty good with the help of some terrific folks donating tools to his shop. But we have a long way to go.
We just recently had a great donation from Dino Makropoulos owner of EurekaZone, a complete tracksaw set up with saw and router included for our Marine. We are truly humbled by the support he has received thus far, but we still have a long way to go to get him all set up.
He has not asked for a handout, we are only paying back to a fellow woodworker something that he loved before he went into service of our country. He came out a bit banged up from his service, so we are here to show him we care and we want him back in the shop turning wood again.
Timothy is currently working towards his BA where he lives in Maryland. He married his sweetheart he was dating before he joined up, they moved into their first home together this past year, and they are planning a bright future together, and we wanted to help him in his rehabilitation process, and woodworking is part of it.
Thanks again Michael and Matthew. You guys are the greatest.

-- John Morris

View Nate Meadows's profile

Nate Meadows

1132 posts in 3546 days

#2 posted 01-25-2013 04:37 AM

Micheal, sorry for the delay, I have been computerless for awhile. This story is amazing! The cost of war is staggering and gut wrenching! As a fellow Wounded Warrior, I can honestly say this is a worthy cause. You are a special breed, all of you woodworkers whose heart is bigger than your own pride, your own desire to keep those tools, wood or donations to better your own shop or experience, instead you sacrifice for those like Lt. Fallon! ( even if he is a marine:), ... I am just kidding sir, I hold all marines in the highest regard! I have seen you fight!)

On behalf of myself I want to say thank you! The smallest act of kindness brings light into a dramatically changed life! I hope I will be able to return the help I have gotten in the future and I am sure Lt. Fallon will be changed forever from the kindness you have all shown!

I thank you for your caring heart! You are truly teaching your son solid values!

Your friend,


-- "With a little bit of faith, and some imagination, you can build anything!" Nate

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