From a distance, this is just a lovely chandelier of shimmering glass. Look closely, and you'll see that it is made of glass, alright, 271 glass vials that once held the Moderna vaccine, plus a few of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine. It was constructed by Laura Weiss, a retired nurse in Boulder, Colorado, who was called up to help vaccinate the public. As Weiss and her team vaccinated hundred of thousands of people, she hated to see all those tiny glass bottles going to waste. So she took them home and made a four-foot-tall chandelier she calls Light of Appreciation.
It is a fraction of the vials that have been used in the county's wildly successful vaccination drive. As of September 4, 82% of the eligible population has received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, according to Boulder County Public Health. Meanwhile, 77% are fully inoculated.
"I think it's just awesome everyone came together like that," Weiss said.
While the chandelier is intended to represent widespread unity, Weiss said it is mostly dedicated to nurses and the support staff that made it possible.
"The nurses there had such passion and dedication and skill and care and kindness to do this for hours and hours and hours, day upon day. And not just the nurses. We had wonderful volunteers and administrators, and clerical people. Everyone really came together to vaccinate thousands of people a day."
Weiss had never built a chandelier before, and learned how as she went along. She is looking for a permanent home for Light of Appreciation, in a place where it can be seen by the public. Read the story of the chandelier at NPR.