Marvin Powell, 55, seeks local support during online contest


Powell, who has been confined to a wheelchair for the past 13 years, creates another unique item constructed of barn wood.

LAPEER COUNTY — North Branch resident Marvin Powell is seeking support in his quest for DIY Hero recognition in a national online contest for woodworkers that starts on Tuesday, March 8.

Wheelchair-bound for the past 13 years, Powell, 55, is a talented artisan and a proud member of Lapeer County’s Wheelin’ Team 457.

A woodworker by trade, Powell crafts various wooden items, including American flags, picnic tables, chairs and more.

Powell has a passion for incorporating barn wood into his projects. He recently utilized the remnants from an old barn on his property in North Branch

“I really like making the wavy wooden (American) flags,” Powell said. “I do them by hand, using a bandsaw, hand-grinder and a dremel to carve in the stars.”

Powell does not allow his disability to define his life or impede his ability to take on new challenges which include his recent decision to register and compete in the upcoming DIY Hero competition.

If he gains enough support in the online voting, Powell could garner not only national recognition, but as much as $25,000 in prize winnings.

DIYHero registration is open to crafters, builders, and ‘life hackers’ interested in showing off their creations and telling their stories.

Some of those stories will find their way to inclusion in Make Magazine, a California-based publication focused on “Do It Yourself (DIY)” and “Do It With Others (DIWO)” projects.

DIY Hero competitors will be guided through the competition by television host Mark Bowe, who appears on the Magnolia Network show, Barnwood Builders.

Bowe and his team specialize in the rescue and restoration of 18th- and 19th-century cabins and barns; the very same skills and interests Powell applies to his woodworking projects.

Visit to register and learn more about the American Lung Association and Mark Bowe.