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Nominated by Dawn Schultz
Length of Service:
80+ hours per month for 8 years
January 28, 2014
He doesn't sit on numerous nonprofit Boards, or make a big deal about the things he does, both as a formal volunteer or just to help folks out. But anybody who knows 92 year old Al Falcone has a story to tell of his kindness, of how he helped them out or made them smile when they most needed a friend. In the community where he lives, neighbors wake up to balloons & streamers on the front of their houses on their birthdays. Al puts them up after dark the night before, so most never hear him doing it. He donated last year's Christmas tree to the neighborhood so his poorer neighbors wouldn't have to contribute. And a neighbor spilled a jar of spaghetti sauce over the back seat of her car as she was unloading groceries, & Al rushed out to help her clean up, & replaced the spilt jar with one from his own pantry. He helps neighbors & Senior Center members repair their treasured items to help them keep their memories alive. He is active in his neighborhood Grounds Committee & helps trim trees & bushes. Al's entire life is involved in helping others - his family, his neighbors, & his beloved Senior Center.
Al is a skilled wood carver, & if he encounters anybody going the extra mile to help others, or just somebody he wants to make smile, Al will carve them a pen, or a very delicate bird or butterfly. He has made & presented hundreds of his carvings, & not charged for a single one. He also does chain saw carving, & carved a giant turtle for his grandchildren.
And he formerly volunteers, mainly, but by no means exclusively, with the Charlottesville Senior Center where he has been a member for the last 8 years.
When he was working he spent 35 years with the Boy Scouts of America, where the motto of one good deed a day became part of who Al is - except he seldom limits any day to just one good deed. - a habit that began in 1937 when he was given the Outstanding Boy Scout Award at age 16.
He is a wounded war veteran of WWII. He earned a Purple Heart, & then as President of the WWII 319th Bomb B group compiled many member histories for veterans - a project that took him years. He continues to volunteer with Veterans of Foreign Wars. He helped restore a B26 bomber at the Empire State Aerosciences Museum. And he continues to fund raise for needy Scouts so they can make trips.
At the Senior Center he drops a card or letter into the Troops (Blue Star Moms) Mail Box every day. His mother insisted that birthdays are not for receiving but for giving. So on one birthday while still living in Florida he painted fire hydrants in his neighborhood. Most recently on his 92nd birthday he gave the Senior Center's kitchen a deep cleaning like it had never seen before, & installed some much needed storage shelves. He also does repairs, & helps maintain furniture in the building. He helps out the grounds men & gardeners when the need arises. He helps sort donations for the several fund raising yard sales the Senior Center holds each year. Al checks & repairs electrical equipment & furniture that comes in as donations to ensure its reliability for resale. He also volunteers during the sales as a cashier & packer. He sends out Get Well Cards to sick Senior Center Members. He repaired the vinyl on the moveable walls in the downstairs ballroom. He speaks at Memorial Day & Veteran's Day events.
Al was married for 48 years. He has a daughter, two grandsons & 5 great grandchildren. And at 92 he shows no signs of slowing down or of backing away from his lifelong philosophy of at least one good deed a day, & dedicating his life to making others smile.
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