The O'Connor Woodworking Story

My name is Jeff O’Connor and I am a retired U.S. Navy EOD (Bomb Squad) Master Chief and a former Chicago Law Enforcement Officer.

In 2018, after multiple combat deployments, I was diagnosed with several explosive blast related Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI) and Chronic Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Shorty after my diagnosis, I began searching for a way to better deal with my invisible wounds of war. That is when I discovered and applied to the Purple Heart Project. I was accepted to attend the PHP which is a 5 day hand tool woodworking course for Combat Wounded Veterans taught by world renowned woodworker, Rob Cosman.

Although I had been a woodworker for 25 years, this weeklong course showed me a new method of woodworking as a distractive therapy and changed my life forever. After this inspiring course and my military retirement, I launched into O'Connor Woodworking full time and never looked back!!

I share this part of my life, not for sympathy, but as a hope that other struggling veterans will read this and perhaps inspire them to find their outlet for peace.

I currently reside in Virginia Beach, Virginia with my custom sewist wife, Kim, the owner of The Striped Tomato, a custom apparel company. Together, we create custom work in wood and fabric for clients around the world.

A portion of proceeds from every project are donated to various veteran and 1st Responder Organizations around the U.S.