Lumberjack Fallow is a PWS of indeterminate age who lives in Toxic Waste. Everyone in Burlington knows Lumberjack on account of his notorious behavior. He chases intruders off the premises while brandishing a hatchet, hence the nickname. He panhandles on Church Street with sarcastic cardboard signs like WILL WORK FOR BRAINS. He drags one of his feet behind him when he walks, so he actually really does shamble. He has been arrested at least twice for public drunkenness and yelling at rubbernecking abnormals. When abnormals think of PWS, they usually think of Doctor Z and then of Lumberjack.
Lumberjack doesn't talk much, so no one knows much about his pre-Toxic Waste life. Occasional references to "the air base" lead people to conclude that he grew up in Plattsburgh, NY. He has been there from the beginning, though, clearing trees, pitching tents, marking off latrine areas and generally keeping a tight ship. Despite a bad smoker's cough, he still does a lot of physical labor.
Over the years, Lumberjack has become the de facto head of Toxic Waste. All newcomers meet with him soon after arriving. He doesn't say much, but sizes them up in a few minutes and decides whether they can stay. When conflicts among residents arise, he mediates. Each side presents their story, whereupon he makes a decision. No one dares to contravene him. In conflicts between Toxic Waste and the rest of the city, Lumberjack is liable to show up and advocate for his people.
And then there was that time, early on in Toxic Waste's history, that some drunk UVM frat boys thought it would be funny to post ZOMBIE CONTAINMENT AREA signs around Toxic Waste. All Toxic Waste residents, asleep at the time, found the signs in the morning and became furious. While they discussed their course of action, Lumberjack silently took the signs into his tent. Several days later, the news came out that the local chapter of the frat was suspended "pending investigation into offensive activities." Unofficial word was that Lumberjack had been waiting in the frat president's room when he came back from a party, the pile of signs at his feet. All he said was, "I got my eye on you," and then he left. No one in the Greek system ever messed with Toxic Waste again. Also the Toxic Waste denizens started nighttime patrols.
Lumberjack doesn't get close to anyone. Most people are afraid of him [and his hatchet], even the Brain Trust, to which he shows up regularly. That said, he has a particular affection for Brandeis, though he tends to call her Kendra. They play poker, at which he always wins because he's not too expressive. He bums cigarettes off her, and Brandeis swears that she has made him smile, although no one really believes this.
He dies at some point in the story, suddenly and unexpectedly, and the entire local PWS community turns up for the funeral. Everyone discovers interesting information about Lumberjack. He was only 42 when he died, which really makes Peter and Isabel stop and think. His given name was Jonathan, and he was born and raised in Plattsburgh, where his father was stationed at the air base. He dropped out of high school and worked for a logging company [hah hah hah!]. He had a daughter, Kendra, with his partner at the time. Then "something happened" [obit is evasive -- Isabel surmises that he went to jail], and the details of his life are vague until the 2006 establishment of Toxic Waste. He is predeceased by his father and mother and survived by his younger sister and his daughter, Kendra Benoit, who is in her mid-20s.
Kendra shows up at the funeral and fills in some of the gaps. When she was about 5, Lumberjack was drunk driving and hit a pedestrian, killing him. He went to jail, as Isabel guesses, for vehicular manslaughter, at which point Kendra's mom broke up with Lumberjack and moved with Kendra to her parents' house in Ohio. Kendra's mom married her stepfather when she was 6, and the three of them really loved each other. But still Kendra and Lumberjack corresponded secretly for years. Their letters stopped around 2006 when he established Toxic Waste; Kendra thinks because he was ashamed to be homeless and sick. When she sees that he was part of a community that cared for and respected him, she wishes he had told her because he should have been proud.
Notes: Going bald. Needs cigarette glued to bottom lip. Wears plaid shirt, jeans, baseball cap.