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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-11-2011, 09:23 AM Thread Starter
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Default Oak Flag Box

This project has been in the making for over two years. I was given two short oak logs from my Uncle Bob. He salvaged the logs from the farm that my grandfather grew up on and where my uncle now lives.
The logs were split in half and sliced up on the band saw. Here they are stickered, setting at the end of my workbench.

After two full years of air drying, I rough planed the boards to 7/8″ and ripped them to about 6″ wide. Here, I restacked and stickered them. It will be another 3 months before I build the flag box.

Grandpa was a tall soft spoken man who wasn’t much for words. When he did speak, it was always to the point and around a cigar stuck in the corner of his mouth. Grandpa’s signature cigar was chewed never smoked. About fifty paces from the house was a small workshop where Grandpa could fix anything. His shop was barely 10′ by 10′ and inside it was stuffed to the rafters. In the center was a small cast iron wood burner. I liked to visit grandpa in his shop, sit next the warm stove and marvel at all the stuff. On the rare occasion, when his project was beyond repair, grandpa would salvage the nuts, bolts or springs and store them for future repairs. I would not call his shop organized but I am sure if something was needed, he knew right where to find it. His workbench mirrored the rest of the shop. On one end set an old motor converted into a grinder. It wouldn’t start on it’s own, you had to spin the grinding wheel and quickly plug it in. As a kid I thought that was the coolest machine.

Grandpa earned a living as a mason and among the many buildings he built was the Post Office in Otisville, Michigan. It’s no wonder that he thought my home, with it’s wood foundation, would as he put it “be falling down soon”. Each time I would go to visit, Grandpa would ask “how’s that wood holding up” followed by ” it’s not to late to put some block under that house”. I knew he was kidding by that little twitch in his cigar. Then the conversation would turn to how the garden was doing this year or what project he was working on.

It was in WW II that Grandpa served our county in the US Army. He never said much about the war. He had a wood framed box to display his medals and an old riffle that he brought back as a souvenir.

During his funeral Grandpa was honored for his service with the presentation of the United States flag by VFW post #822 .

On this Veterans Day I would like to take a moment and say ” Thank You” to all those that served to protect our freedom.

Thanks Grandpa

Keith

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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-11-2011, 10:34 AM
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Keith, Quite obviously your Grandpa was a cool guy. My maternal grandfather had a similar setup and was the coolest guy I think I have ever known. He, also served as a military man and worked six days per week as a barber. Where they were different was that my Granddad, unlike yours; could mess-up anything and everything he worked on stayed broken. I never knew him to get mad at anything, but he certainly had a huge pile of items "in need of repair". Your story above is really cool and I am sure he is sorely missed. OPG3
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-11-2011, 12:38 PM Thread Starter
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Hello Otis,
I smiled when I read this
"could mess-up anything and everything he worked on stayed broken"
There have been many times that I felt that way. From time to time my wife reminds me of the toaster, I thought needed adjustment and it never worked again.
Thanks for commenting.
Keith
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-11-2011, 06:50 PM
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Great background story, Keith.

I love the way you took the time to dry the oak.

You obviously learned something from your grandfather...

Oh, and also a beautiful flag box,,,

James
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-13-2011, 08:58 AM
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I too salute all Vets this Veteran's Day.
My Grandpa was Army WWI, my Dad was Army WWII, his older brother was an Army Air Corp pilot and died in the Phillipines WWII, his younger brother was Marines Korea, and I was Navy Vietnam era.
On Veteran's Day, I took Dad out to celebrate our service by going out to one of the restaurants that offered the meals for Vets. He passed away this past August, so he missed this year. He was also chosen to participate in the Wisconsin Honor Flight program this year. I got notified the week after he passed away.
My Dad was like Bench Dawg's grandpa; he could fix anything. While growing up, I never really understood, nor appreciated, how talented he was. But he was patient, and when I was ready to learn, he was unselfish with his time. People like them are shining examples of their generation. More people today could use role models like them.

P. S. Nice job on the flag box!

Last edited by routafinger; 11-14-2011 at 06:55 AM.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-14-2011, 07:23 AM
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Awesome story and box Keith! My Dad also fought in WWII, in the Army 554th Anti-Aircraft division, and I too built a box for his flag and other WWII memorabilia of his, when he passed away in Jan. Thanks to all who fought and will fight for our freedom!!
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-17-2011, 12:35 PM Thread Starter
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Hello,
Sorry for the delayed response. I missed the e-mail notice of additional posts.
Lee,
Thanks for posting the picture. It's cool how you put everything in one box.
Keith

Frank,
A family full of veterans. I'll bet you are a proud family. My Grandpa and I are the only veterans in four generations.
I am sorry that your Grandpa didn't get the chance to participate in the Wisconsin Honor Flight program.
Keith
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-18-2011, 08:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Bench Dawg View Post
Hello,
Sorry for the delayed response. I missed the e-mail notice of additional posts.
Lee,
Thanks for posting the picture. It's cool how you put everything in one box.
Keith

Frank,
A family full of veterans. I'll bet you are a proud family. My Grandpa and I are the only veterans in four generations.
I am sorry that your Grandpa didn't get the chance to participate in the Wisconsin Honor Flight program.
Keith
It was my Dad, but he did get picked. There are other WWII vets out there that still have the opportunity, and I hope all who can make it get a chance to go. I salute all of our vets.
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