Two officers with the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) at A. B. Won Pat Guam International Airport (GUM) are spreading a little extra holiday cheer this year among the TSA workforce and traveling public.
Lead Transportation Security Officers (LTSOs) Paul Luzano and Deborah Mendiola used their crafting and creative talents to make two TSA-themed nutcrackers. On display in the public area of the airport, the nutcrackers are a male and female TSA officer in uniform.
“The TSA nutcrackers are so unique and sure to bring a smile to the faces of the traveling public and larger airport community,” said TSA Federal Security Director for the Pacific Airports Jenel Cline. “With the challenges of the last year, we are proud of our employees who have used their love of crafting to spread a little holiday cheer in this way.”
The nutcrackers, which were recycled from previously themed nutcrackers, were transformed to represent TSA officers. Each nutcracker is 14 inches tall.
The uniforms are hand sewn and replicate the elements of a TSA officer’s uniform including agency insignia patches, a miniature shield and even an airport security badge. The nutcrackers are outfitted with face masks, similar to what TSA officers are required to wear while on duty during the coronavirus global pandemic. The LTSOs’ passion and love of crafting allowed them to create these unique pieces within a few hours.
According to German folklore, nutcrackers are beloved around the world and are thought to bring good luck to family and protection for the home. They are known for their whimsical expressions and unique charm.
In addition to carrying out their security responsibilities at TSA, Luzano and Mendiola both enjoy crafting away from work, often making piñatas and other celebratory party favors. Both have been with TSA since 2002.