Heart of Glass - Blenko Glass
Blenko Glass is a West Virginia treasure that spans generations. Nothing symbolizes the state of West Virginia better or more beautifully than Blenko Glass. We will discuss current and former craftsmen and designers and how important it is that Blenko and West Virginia glass be appreciated and valued by the younger generation.
Wednesday, February 13, 2008
Blenko The People - Jim Deakin
JIM DEAKIN - BLENKO GLASS
Jim Deakin was employed at blenko from around 1953 until he retired about 10 years ago. He died in late 2007. He was Blenko Glass's engineer from the 1950s until his retirement. He had an electrical degree from England and was the brother of Jeanne Deakin Blenko, mother of richard blenko. He came to America to visit but never left. His competence in maintaining the Blenko factory was legendary: there was nothing that Jim Deakin could not fix, repair or create. Jim created the blenko spin machines after seeing a German company's machines in the late 1950s. It is the spin machines that have helped keep blenko competitive in a machine world and he made them from scrap metal. He was drafted twice: once for the english army and once in the american army. In the english army,he was a mechanic;in the us army, he operated radar stations in germany. He was too young for WWII. He stood about 5' foot 7 inches tall and 155 pounds and had an iron like grip. Many times i saw him loosen screws or nuts that defied all methods to loosen up. He was a very good left handed bowler and was on all the Blenko bowling teams of the 1960s and 1970s. I used to marvel at his powerful left handed hook at the alleys. He was a former legion commander in Milton wva. But most of all, Jim was a caring and loving person, usually spending lots of time helping people out of trouble any time they needed help. He must have taken my parents up and removed snow bound cars dozens of times. If you needed help, Jim was always there to help. So I lost a great friend, an uncle and a remarkle, kind fellow.