Mishawaka man has the gun used in brother's death turned into art
MISHAWAKA, Ind.--- A Mishawaka man had the gun used to kill his brother turned into a piece of art by the nonprofit organization Raw Tools. The gun was used to claim the life of Stephen Miller's older brother, Tom, in 1972.
"My brother was the person was the person that I wanted to be like," said Miller. "I followed what he did. I learned from him."
In the years following Tom's death, Stephen began raising awareness about gun violence.
"It will never be anything more than it was, a tragedy but, on the other hand, you can turn tragedy’s toward a greater purpose," said Miller.
It was that since of purpose that led Miller to eventually meet Shane Claiborne of Raw Tools. Eventually Miller gave Claiborne the gun that killed his brother to be repurposed.
Raw Tools typically turns guns into garden tools, but the age of Miller's gun made transforming it difficult.
"The gun that we were given by Mr. Miller was unique because it was so old and so rusted," said Claiborne. "It was hard to reshape so we did something different with it."
Instead a Raw Tools blacksmith in Knoxville, Tennessee turned the gun into a sculpture.
Claiborne says he's glad to be able to turn something that caused so much pain for the Miller family into something beautiful.
"It has a symbolic power, the metal transforming, but we’ve also found in doing this that we’re also giving people space to grieve," said Claiborne.
For more information on how to donate an unwanted gun to RAWtools visit their website.