Eyemobile Involvement – Tony Minucci

My involvement with the district Eyemobile began in the late 80’s when the Somerville Lions Club brought up a small eyemobile vehicle to my shop (26 feet long) for repairs.  That eyemobile was brought to me a few times for minor structural repairs. After that, I was contacted by the Somerville Lions that a new eyemobile was being built in my hometown of Ashland and would I go look at it with the intention of completing it. For reasons I wasn’t told at the time, the company building it had stopped working on it. I saw it as a challenge and I had it brought to my shop. Three of my fellow club members (Carl Phillipo, Vern Breault and Norman Rondo) looked at it and said “lets do it”.  We had to build all the inside working stations, a storage room, and installation of a heating system which was donated by an RV company at no cost to the Lions.  I had to have a company insulate the unit and also install the heating ducts in the ceiling, among many other necessities to make it a working vehicle at no labor cost to the district.  When we finished with this new eyemobile, the Somerville Lions came up to see it and offered me the older eyemobile if I wanted it.

John Sullivan (Somerville Lions Club) told me they had a little problem because the deal they had with the Natick National Guard that was supposed to store this new oversized eyemobile fell through and would I mind storing it at my lot. I said it would be an honor to store the vehicle. 

In the late 90’s, Charlie Menard came to my club talking about a new Winebago eyemobile. When I started asking him a few questions about the instruments and mechanics of it, he asked me to come to an eyembile meeting and talk to the factory representative. In 2000 I went to pick up this new winebago at McDonalds in Wrentham and drove it to my lot. 

Norman Rondo’s son, who was a manager of Walmart in Framingham, called me and said he could give us a grant for $1,500 for a blood pressure machine for the new eyemobile. We brought the eyemobile to that Walmart location for screening, and received the check for $1,500.

The current eyemobile is the fourth vehicle to be stored on my lot.  The rest is history.

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