Fort Worth

‘Tinkers' Den' Volunteers Make Toys for Hospitalized Children

The Trinity Terrace 'Tinkers' Den' has made and delivered more than 2,000 toys to Cook Children's Hospital in Fort Worth

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The Trinity Terrace Retirement Home has a 'Tinkers' Den' woodworking room that is a cross between an automobile assembly line and Santa's workshop.

"There's something to say about a wooden toy," Tinkers' Den volunteer Skipper Gray said. "It's a great simplicity and honesty about it."

Retiree volunteers spend their free time making wooden toy cars for sick and injured children at Cook Children's Hospital in Fort Worth.

"We know there's kids down there that are waiting for these cars to come in," Tinkers' Den Chairman Donald Martin said.

The Tinkers deliver to about 15 cars to the hospital every month. Over the years, they've made more than 2,000 toy cars of different models.

"Maybe it'll bring a little bit of joy to a time that's not the most comfortable for them," Gray said. "Takes their mind off what else is going on in the hospital."

Some of the volunteers are new to woodworking, others have sawdust in their blood.

"I've been doing woodworking for probably 60-years," Gray explained. "My grandfather was a finish carpenter. My father and uncle were both carpenters."

Gray's job is to sand the car wheel parts and put grooves in them to look like tread marks.

"You're not thinking about what's going on around the world," Gray said of his work. "You're looking at a piece of wood, trying to figure out what it's going to look like. What are you going to make out of it?"

Over the years, the car body styles have changed, just like cars on the road.

"We only made 1,000 of these," Martin said pointing to an older model with more cuts of he saw. "We're gonna start building this car," he said holding a more simple design.

"The project makes both the older generation and the new ones feel good," Gray said.

The toys the Tinkers are making now will be for holiday time delivery.

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