Sunday, September 19, 2010

Iron Station, North Carolina’s Harmonica Player and “Make-Do” Tool-Maker, Ivan Angel

dad Back in mid-September, I had an opportunity to spend a few days with my dad in Iron Station, North Carolina. We had a great time.

Dad now is 88, going on about 55. He’s survived indescribable military duty at Omaha Beach during the WWII Normandy Invasion, and subsequent life challenges you wouldn’t believe were I to list even a few of them. Now he’s retired and living the Good Life in North Carolina’s Iron Station.


Flag The Good Life, however, means staying busy from early morning until night on projects as varied as erection of a home-made flagpole well over 20 feet in height, to an endless series of modifications to his “Moon Rover,” a vehicle that began life many years ago – heck, decades ago! – as a lawn tractor with attached mower blade. Moon RoverThe mower blade was removed long ago. And now, with constant maintenance, this former Murray Lawn Tractor serves ably all four seasons as a means of local transportation. And, of course, topic of conversation. Far more colorful than a golf cart!

During this recent visit, dad allowed me to take a couple of videos. Here’s one of him playing the harmonica.

And here’s another in which he demonstrates how to create “make-do” tools. This one a drill bit long enough to drill through several thick boards. Using only a piece of threaded stock that itself becomes the securing bolt. The shop, as you can see, is full of such “make-do” tools, many created for special applications during reconstruction of the Moon Rover.

So there you have it. An example of how to stay active and engaged in retirement.

And stay tuned. Next we’ll visit South Carolina’s Cheraw State Park. Another beautiful State Park. With an 18-hole championship golf course, no less.


  1. WOW Bob my dad was a normandy invasion survivor also. The best I can remember he also went in on Omaha second set of landing craft, 3rd Armored Div. Of course they landed in the wrong place. He would be 97 now if cancer had not got him.

  2. Thanks for the note, Barney. And special thanks to your Father for his service. Omaha Beach wasn't the place to be right at that time ....