Veteran Teaching Veterans Glass Making at CMOG
CORNING, N.Y.(WENY)-- With Veterans Day just around the corner, the Corning Museum of Glass wanted to give some veterans the opportunity to learn how to make glass with someone who understands them better than any other civilian.
"Well being a veteran myself, I know the difficulties of being a veteran and being in a normal life after being a veteran and to be able to connect with other veterans and to be able to share glass blowing with the veterans is very rewarding for me and I think it's very rewarding for them, at least that's the feedback I get," says Kurt Carlson, Team Leader for Make Your Own Glass at CMOG.
WENY News attended Kurt's class and was able to stop and speak with a veteran who confirmed what Kurt has heard so far.
"It's rewarding because they know where I've been and they can relate to me and it's always fun to learn from a Veteran. It's kinda of amazing, just watching the glass expand, knowing that I'm producing a piece of art. It's pretty awesome," Shawn Moris, Marine 97-01, tells WENY News.
Kurt was the brains behind this weekend event, which he actually came up with years ago to help give back to the veterans.
"So we've been doing it about five years now and I have veterans that every time they see me they say "when is the next thing" they look forward to this opportunity for a whole year. It's a very special thing to a number of vets. ," says Carlson.
Kurt has been working with glass for over 40 years and at the CMOG for just over 10 but, he is calling this weekend his "swan song" as he heads into retirement.
"I've got two days left, I'm retiring. This is my goodbye song and I get to spend it with some Vet's and kind of share my experience with them and share glass and maybe get some more converts for glass because it's an amazing material, it's magic," Carlson tells WENY News.
But don't worry, for anyone who did not get the chance to sign up for Kurt's class this year will still have the chance to learn from him in years to come. Even though he is retiring, CMOG has asked him to come back for Veterans Day weekends in the future to help lead the class, and he said he would make sure to keep his schedule clear for them .