By Scott Prater
Team Schriever members may have noticed that the Awards, Engraving and Picture Framing shop has been closed for the past six weeks.
It re-opened for business Monday inside Schriever’s Outdoor Recreation/Information, Travel and Tickets office, and had been closed because its lone artist, Wendy Derosier, suffered a severe eye injury while at home in mid August.
Derosier was spending a relaxing weekend with her grandchildren and had been helping them construct an impromptu fort on her deck when an unfortunate accident occurred.
She was using a bungee cord to tie down a tarp when the end of the bungee snapped back and struck her right eye.
“I didn’t even have time to close my eye lid,” she said. “I knew it was serious right away. It swelled and I couldn’t open it, so my husband took me to the emergency room.”
Upon inspection, doctors told her she had suffered a torn iris [the colored part of the eye ball]. They treated her onsite, but the procedure only marked the beginning of her recovery. Doctors followed by prescribing an entire month of rest.
“I was told I had to remain as still as possible for the eye to heal correctly,” she said. “I could make no sudden movements. That was perhaps the most difficult part of the healing process. You don’t realize how much you move every day.”
She lost 100 percent of sight in her right eye, but has since regained a large majority of it. With corrective lenses, she now has 20-40 vision in the eye. Doctors will perform another surgery at a later date to possibly improve her vision, but she says she sees well enough to continue working and is back at the ODR/ITT office full time.
“We want everyone to know the AEPF shop is now open again and Wendy can do everything she has done before,” said Korey Kuykendall, Schriever ODR/ITT director. “This also gives us an opportunity to highlight the products available here.”
The shop and store, located on the first floor of Building 300, offers more than 400 customized gift items, including coffee mugs, gift boxes, phone covers, posters, clocks and even kitchenware. Each award is constructed of high quality material and Derosier uses a laser engraver which delivers perfect end products.
“Since the first word in our title is ‘awards,’ people tend to think we only create military related items,” Derosier said. “But, we can create very personalized gifts in a wide variety of mediums.”
“We can personalize everything,” Derosier said. “For example, people can bring in family photos to attach to gift items. Our offerings really run the gamut. Of course, we also create military awards, coin holders, acrylics and a multitude of wood items.”
Derosier has an educational background in graphic design and illustration and more than 19 years of experience in creating lasting gifts. She says appearance and a professional finish make all the difference when it comes to awards and framing.
“You have to be a perfectionist to be a picture framer and gift maker because if people care enough about something to pay to have it framed, it has to be right,” she said.
The shop and store are open all hours that ODR/ITT is open, 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Mondays through Fridays. Call 567-6050 or visit the store for more information.