Elmira/Corning Regional Airport
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Inmate Saddened by Monterey Shock Closure
Written By: Tanja Rekhi
ORANGE (WENY) -- Since 1987 thousands of young men have been given the opportunity to change the direction of their lives through Monterey Shock. 23-year-old Clinton Tiger or Warwick is one of them.
He landed in the state system after a third degree burglary charge. Today, he graduated after six long months of military style boot camp. He says Monterey changed his life.
It's the first shock correction facility in the state. Today the last platoon graduated. The facility is set to close this Summer due to a lack of funding and need.
Lisa West was the secretary at Shock for eight years. She now works at the Elmira facility. She's sad to see Monterey Shock close.
"It's just a total different atmosphere here than anywhere else that I've ever worked. And like I said, making a difference in someone's life is the biggest thing," said West.
While incarcerated many inmates earned their GED, went to alcohol and substance abuse classes, and ultimately learned how to become productive members of society.
"There's a big change in myself. I slowed down my thinking. I don't react right away," said Clinton. "The steps of decision making they taught you here really helped me big time."
Family, previous and current employees, and members of the community crowded the auditorium. Many of them, like Clinton's dad Randy noticing a change in the young men as well.
"[I'm] Very grateful for this program that it's here," said Randy. "Sorry to see it go. There's a lot of wonderful people here who put their heart and soul into this and we are really appreciative of that."
Randy says he noticed a change in Clinton every time he came to visit. Clinton plans on going back to college this Fall and becoming an electrician.