Carl Pixley looked over the collection of tools and machinery cluttered around his shop and on the approach from the road. “There is a lot of history here,” he said, as we walked toward the old drilling rig that was sunk nearly axle deep in the earth. The truck carrying the 22W looked very tired. It was an early 1940s military 6×6. The tires were still holding air, but not much else. Opening the door invited attack by the hornets and bees that had taken up residence inside the old truck.
Gary looked over the old rig. It dated from the early 1940s as well. Some things could be salvaged; perhaps the rig itself was OK. The motor on the rig was probably junk though. The exhaust pipe was open to the sky, collecting all the rain and snow over the last fifteen or more years and most likely the engine was seized and could not be started, but the cables were still good and appropriate areas were still grease covered.
Gary and I had traveled about 80 miles south of Spokane just across the border into Idaho to the home of Carl Pixley. Carl had written to us and invited us to come down and look at the tools he had and was willing to donate to Water for Life. Gary had gone down to meet Carl when there was snow on the ground but he had not been able to really look over the yard. We were there to get what we could and make arrangements for getting the heavy items ready for the lowboy trailer we were going to send later.
Carl had mentioned there was some casing pipe that we could have and pointed out where it was, down in a little swale covered with brush and invisible from where we stood. Gary waded into the brush and found 14 lengths of new 6 in steel casing pipe. It was still banded and some of the pipe had factory caps still protecting the ends. This was a good find.
Gary enlisted a neighbor with a skid-steer on tracks and within about 15 minutes had the pipe loaded and secured on the trailer we had brought. The 5000 lbs of new pipe was about all the trailer could take, but we were able to pull it out of the low spot and up onto the road. This pipe was going on a journey. Within six months we will load it in into a container and send it to Guatemala where one of our volunteer drillers will install this in several remote villages. Carl Pixley’s old but new pipe will help a lot of people.
We are constantly seeking donations of pipe, equipment, material and volunteers. If you, like Carl, have material that sits unused in your yard or shop and you would like to let us put it to use, please let us know. It is only through the generosity of willing folks that Water for Life can bring clean safe water to folks who otherwise would have none. Please help us.