Jennifer DePollo Horn, Farrier and Artist Blacksmith
Jennifer DePollo Horn, and her associate blacksmith, Bill Palmer have completed a massive set of iron flower sculptures to grace the entrance to a new city park in Lapeer, Michigan. The park is characterized as a ‘pocket park’ due to it’s location between two buildings in downtown Lapeer.
Working throughout the past winter the two artist blacksmiths forged the massive flowers. Work took place in the blacksmith shops of both these artists. Jennifer’s ‘Daisy Hill Forge’ in the far north at the eastern end of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and Bill Palmer’s ‘Steel Rose Forge’, located much closer to Lapeer, in Columbiaville, Michigan.
About a year ago I thought that my time on earth was over. Thanks to the support of so many people I’m still here and holding my own. In fact I want to report that I’m doing pretty well.
I’ve done a few projects during the past year, the biggest was building my hunting blind on property we purchased. I had help when the time came to erect it. The project was a shared activity with my grandson who built his own blind, both in my new pole barn.
Most of the other projects were smaller but important to my recovery and attitude about living. Some were small but necessary repairs. Some projects were fun things like flying one of 3 drones and creating videos from the flights. Many are posted on my alternate Blog sight at “OldmanForge.net“
This week I started a new project. We decided it was time to update a lavatory in our house. I thought we’d remove old wallpaper and then decide on new or to paint. We ended up removing everything down to the bare walls. A new cabinet, new counter-top with built-in sink, new plumbing fixtures, new wainscotting half walls, wall fixtures for towels and tissues, new light fixture and new paint will be done for this upgrade.
We’ve repaired any drywall blemishes and are ready to prime the walls. The wainscot wall panel pieces have been painted and are ready for installation as soon as the upper walls are painted.
With any luck at all this project should be finished by the end of the week. So as you see, as long as I can do projects I’m happy and it’s a good sign that I’m still healthy!
I have pancreatic cancer. I was diagnosed on December 13, 2017. It was, for me, a depressing Christmas. On December 21 I was in Emergency due to infection and fever. On January 10th I underwent a 9 hour surgery where a “whipple” procedure removed a number of internal organs. I came out of the surgery with a positive outlook thanks to my surgeon. He told me that a good part of my healing success would depend on my attitude. He suggested getting involved in PurpleStride. He said setting goals and working to them would do much to help my body heal.
On May 20th I plan to dye my hair and beard a bright purple for a 5K Walk along the Detroit River with about 40 of my supporters. This is an un-timed event. Participants who will walk with me, and hundreds of other participants, register online at PurpleStride Detroit and with the Team “Gary’s Gang”.
Some may only show up and do a brief walk if they aren’t up to the full distance. Other’s can support our Team and make donations at our Team page, through one of our Team Members. All the donations go to the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network for research to find a cure for this terrible disease.
We only have a 9 per cent chance to live beyond 5 years after being diagnosed. Think about it! That means for most of us we are fighting a 91 per cent chance that we will die in 5 years. We want that statistic to change. Your support can help achieve that goal.
Click here; Gary’s Gang – PurpleStride Detroit 2018 to go to my page and Join the Team as a walker or make a donation. Select one of the team members to donate through as it helps them achieve a donation goal. Please allow your name and donation to be shown
First I want to thank those who inquired about my condition these past several weeks. Your thoughts and prayers are so very appreciated.
July and August had been month’s of activity and travel that one aspires to when they retire. I turned 70 and life seemed to be good as I reached that milestone.
At the end of July we went to West Virginia for a family reunion. Following that we went through Shenandoah National Park, the Blue RIdge Parkway and a number of other sites. The end of August we went to South Carolina to visit family and participate in the ‘Great Eclipse’ event. On both trips we took the slow back-road routes home and enjoyed seeing things off the beaten tourist paths.
After returning home I felt somewhat drained and attributed it to long hours on the road. I did little for about a week. A week after getting home I had an appointment to sell an item I had on Craigslist so I forced myself to meet the buyer and help load the item on his vehicle.
After the buyer left, Judy observed that my color was bright yellow and said “get in the car we’re going to the hospital”.
That was the beginning of 11 days in the hospital. It was discovered that my bile duct was constricted and also contained stones. On the 3rd day a 90 minute endoscopic procedure removed the stones. At the same time a stent was inserted to expand the bile duct constriction. The side effect of this procedure resulted in severe pancreatitis. The pain was horrible, I thought I was dying. For the next 8 days I fought pain and tried to recover enough to go home. Finally, on the 11th day I told the nurse I was going home. Doctors had by that time agreed the sooner I left the hospital the better I would be.
At home the recovery continues. Day by day there is some small improvement. I’ve been home a week but not recovered fully.
The future calls for another endoscopic procedure before the end of the month to check internally how things are healing. In a month or two another endoscopic procedure will be performed to remove the stent. Because there were stones to clear, the doctor said a future determination will be made to decide if my gall bladder needs to be removed.
I lost three weeks so far. The end of summer is always a productive time with cooler weather and preparation for Fall and Winter. This setback was unexpected and put a real crimp in my plans. This misadventure isn’t over yet and I don’t know if I will ever recover this lost time.
Again, thanks to all of my family and friends who have sent flowers, cards and called me to offer support and prayers.