NEENAH — The art of making or repairing a violin is a methodical one. For Sonja St. John, that structure and routine are a necessity and, in many ways, a saving grace.
"It's a way to stay on track even when chaos can be happening right outside," she said of a process that she ends with gluing a different handwritten message inside each new violin she creates.
One recent one read: "In honor of past, present and future souls of courage and wisdom."
Foremost in her mind is her brother, Jon St. John, an Army specialist who died in Iraq.