EUSTIS, Fla. — Inside his workshop, Oscar Morris whittles, sands, and hammers away. He’s turning dead, old Christmas trees into beautiful, shiny walking canes for veterans.
- Oscar Morris creates canes out of old Christmas trees
- The canes are personalized for veterans
- LINK: Free Canes For Veterans Facebook page
“The Christmas tree is like the veteran,” said Morris, who served in the U.S. Navy. “It was taken young, whipped into shape, it was proudly decorated, displayed. And when the season is over, it goes to the curb. And that is the way a lot of veterans feel — that they got pushed to the curb.”
To date, 631 canes have been packed with care and shipped near and far to veterans of all ages.
“You sit there and keep putting all the love in this that you can, and you are just imagining them walking with this,” Morris said.
In Leesburg, Florida, Joe Kaspert’s cane is personalized just for him, just like they all are.
He uses his cane for balance, but the 91 year-old admits the recognition the cane brings is what really helps him.
“Many, many a time people, I don’t even know come and pat me on the shoulder and say, “I like your cane,’” Kaspert said with tears in his eyes.
Those tears show that conversation goes a long way for the aging veteran. The canes bring recognition to a population of people often forgotten.
Something Oscar Morris is never tired of hearing those words from the hundreds of veterans he has helped.
“They get so much out of a piece of wood — it is the mini miracle,” Morris said.
Morris said he has about 81 veterans on the waiting list for canes. He said each will get them, but it will just take a little time.
To follow Morris and the Free Canes for Veterans Group, click here.