PELL CITY – Eden Elementary students gathered around the table in front of the large window while Jerry Wilks and his 16-year-old son, Hayden, began tinting the windows to the school library – at no charge.
“I get to tint some really cool stuff,” Wilks, owner of Jerry’s Custom Glass Tinting in Talladega, told the children.
Once, Wilks said, he tinted the windows to a Lamborghini, which immediately got a response from the children.
“Yeah, wow, cool,” students said as they listened and watched Wilks.
Librarian Vickie Hartzog said she asked Wilks to provide her a price for what it would cost to tint two sets of windows and a door window.
“Did you see that chair?” Hartzog asked.
The back of the red chair, the side which faced the window, had turned pink from the constant sun exposure.
“Look at this,” Hartzog said, pointing to the world globes damaged from sun exposure. The plastic globes had become brittle.
During story time, students held their hands above their eyes to shield the sun at times, she said.
“I was trying to think of what kind of fundraiser I was going to have to come up with the money to pay for the tinting,” Hartzog said.
When Wilks placed a call to Madico Southeast in Georgia, where he buys his tinting material, he told the supplier what he was doing and asked if if could give a discount. The company did more. It provided the materials for free.
Wilks said if Madico was willing to provide the materials without cost, he was going to throw in the labor for free.
“I felt it in my heart to give them the labor,” said Wilks, who lives in Pell City. “It’s for the kids.”
The project, materials and labor could have cost the school close to $1,800.
“It’s a blessing, for sure,” Hartzog said.
Wilks cleared his calendar for Thursday and was at Eden Elementary with his son at 8 a.m. The project took most of the day to complete.
“My son was excited to come here today,” Wilks said.
Hayden, a student at Pell City High, attended Eden.
Wilks continued to place the tinting on the windows, which will add to the security of the school. Someone can see outside from the inside of the library, but those outside cannot see in.
“A lot of people don’t know the difference it (tinting) can make,” Wilks added. “It’s definitely a filter for the sun.”
He said window tinting provides UV protection, as well as the ability to reduce the radiant heat from the sun.
“It will protect the carpet, the furniture and it will protect the kids,” Wilks said.