Charlie Haughey’s CBS interview

May 7, 2013

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ADX member Charlie Haughey has been in the media quite a bit lately.

Charlie has always been an important member of the ADX community. He’s a retired cabinet maker, but his skills don’t stop at fine woodworking. He has an outside-the-box-thinking mind, and tends to have valuable input on projects that run the gamut of fabrication types. Most importantly to the ADX community: he loves to teach and help eager people. Charlie is a resource to everyone in the ADX shop because he’s approachable, and wants to share his knowledge, experience, and understanding.

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Charlie is most known around ADX for his wooden spheres. They are attention-grabbing pieces of beautiful artwork that draw head scratching, speculative conversation, and general awe-struck looks of wonder. How anyone sets out to build a hollow sphere from scrap wood is beyond us, but somehow Charlie managed to build not one, but two of them. One even has a few tunnels through it. Is your mind blown yet?

 

Captured VC Motorcycle

Captured VC Motorcycle

In the fall of 2012, Charlie’s nearly 2,000 image-strong collection of photos from his service in Vietnam came out of the shoe box they lived in for the past four decades. No one really knew what that meant for Charlie or the photos. Now, nearly eight months later, Charlie’s photos are drawing a lot of attention–and with reason. The collection is poignant, powerful, and very unique. Charlie and the Chieu Hoi Project team put on a 28-photo show at ADX in April, which drew nearly 1,000 visitors over the course of the month. Numerous media outlets–including CBS, American Public Media, and The Boston Globe–have covered the story.

It’s been quite a ride for Charlie–of course, he is encountering a lot of feelings and memories that he had long forgotten. But it all seems to be for good. A few individuals in Charlie’s photos have been identified, thanks in part to the international reach the photos have received. The Chieu Hoi team plans to continue to work with Vietnam veterans’ groups to attempt to identify more individuals, and there is a book of photos currently being planned. And, throughout all of it, Charlie is still just Charlie. Despite the fame and name recognition (Charlie’s son, Charles Jr., was recently asked by someone if he was “Charlie Haughey the with the Vietnam photos”), Charlie is still just a guy in the shop building wooden sculptures from scrap. Come by ADX sometime and meet Charlie. The only things he enjoys more than building things from scrap is having a beer at Basecamp and chatting.

You can follow the Chieu Hoi project on the Chieu Hoi website, blog, Flickr, and Facebook.

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