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Woodturning News: General News

SAN DIEGO UNION-TRIBUNE: Injured Marine finds healing in woodworking (08/04/2016)

Thursday, August 4, 2016   (0 Comments)
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SAN DIEGO UNION-TRIBUNE: Injured Marine finds healing in woodworking (08/04/2016)

An injured Camp Pendleton Marine found healing in woodworking and is sharing the art with comrades.

Retired Gunnery Sgt. Ernesto Aquino was wounded 12 years ago during his fifth deployment to Iraq and Afghanistan and came home with back injuries that left him wheelchair bound with post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injury.

He was close to taking his life, but the thought of his children without a father held him back. Four years ago, an occupational therapist introduced Aquino to woodworking.

“It has given me an avenue for coping with my PTSD,” Aquino said. “It saved my life.” Now Aquino teaches the craft to other Marines.
photo

Every Tuesday, Aquino goes to Camp Pendleton and mentors Marines at the Wounded Warrior Battalion during a woodturning therapy class that is part of a program called Turn Around for Vets, run by nonprofit San Diego Wood Turners.

Volunteers from the nonprofit bring donated lathes and wood and teach injured Marines woodturning skills to make pens, boxes and bowls and in the process come to terms with deep troubles. The free therapy program headed by Tom Lightner was founded by retired nurse Nan Bushley and orthopedic surgeon and former Navy officer Dr. Kenneth Roth.

Along with Camp Pendleton, the program also operates at Naval Medical Center San Diego and the Veterans Affairs Aspire Center near Old Town., where Aquino mentors comrades on Wednesdays.

Aquino set up a woodturning shop in his garage and backyard to teach Marines one-on-one at his home in Fallbrook. Last month, several dozen volunteers from Home Depot in partnership with San Marcos-based nonprofit Wounded Warrior Homes built work areas in Aquino’s garage and backyard so he could have more space to run woodturning therapy classes for veterans. So far he has taught 15 Marines, mostly from Camp Pendleton.

“I want to help others because I want them to experience the good of woodturning that hopefully will help them heal,” Aquino said. “Etium en Pugna — ‘Still in the Fight.’”

Some of the wood art made in the program is sold at area gift shops, such as Torrey Pine State Reserve Museum and Gift Shop, Naval Medical Center and Naval Air Station - North Island gift shops. Aquino also sells his work at facebook.com/bellazcaftedartz.

For information about the Turn Around for Veterans program, visit sdwt.org or email Aquino at P.ErnestoA@Yahoo.com.

Retired Gunnery Sgt. Ernesto Aquino was wounded 12 years ago during his fifth deployment to Iraq and Afghanistan and came home with back injuries that left him wheelchair bound with post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injury.

He was close to taking his life, but the thought of his children without a father held him back. Four years ago, an occupational therapist introduced Aquino to woodworking.

“It has given me an avenue for coping with my PTSD,” Aquino said. “It saved my life.” Now Aquino teaches the craft to other Marines.
photo

Every Tuesday, Aquino goes to Camp Pendleton and mentors Marines at the Wounded Warrior Battalion during a woodturning therapy class that is part of a program called Turn Around for Vets, run by nonprofit San Diego Wood Turners.

Volunteers from the nonprofit bring donated lathes and wood and teach injured Marines woodturning skills to make pens, boxes and bowls and in the process come to terms with deep troubles. The free therapy program headed by Tom Lightner was founded by retired nurse Nan Bushley and orthopedic surgeon and former Navy officer Dr. Kenneth Roth.

Along with Camp Pendleton, the program also operates at Naval Medical Center San Diego and the Veterans Affairs Aspire Center near Old Town., where Aquino mentors comrades on Wednesdays.

Aquino set up a woodturning shop in his garage and backyard to teach Marines one-on-one at his home in Fallbrook. Last month, several dozen volunteers from Home Depot in partnership with San Marcos-based nonprofit Wounded Warrior Homes built work areas in Aquino’s garage and backyard so he could have more space to run woodturning therapy classes for veterans. So far he has taught 15 Marines, mostly from Camp Pendleton.

“I want to help others because I want them to experience the good of woodturning that hopefully will help them heal,” Aquino said. “Etium en Pugna — ‘Still in the Fight.’”

Some of the wood art made in the program is sold at area gift shops, such as Torrey Pine State Reserve Museum and Gift Shop, Naval Medical Center and Naval Air Station - North Island gift shops. Aquino also sells his work at facebook.com/bellazcaftedartz.

For information about the Turn Around for Veterans program, visit sdwt.org or email Aquino at P.ErnestoA@Yahoo.com.

View source and photos.

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