A gift of new glasses

Special to The Express
Left to right: Jenni Leuzzi, owner of Mill Creek Optical; Brooke Bennett; and Holly Wetherbee, Assistant Principal of the Mount Morris Academy. [PHOTO PROVIDED]

Jenni Leuzzi, owner of Mill Creek Optical, comes to rescue

MOUNT MORRIS — When Brooke Bennett’s glasses broke for the second time, she was devastated.

Bennett, an 11th grade student at the Mount Morris Academy, broke her glasses two times within a week. Her mom repaired the glasses the first time and when the glasses were broken during Physical Education class, a Mount Morris Academy teacher attempted to put the glasses back together for her.

Unfortunately, glue accidentally got on one of the lenses and rendered the glasses useless.

“I just got these glasses last year and my mom had told me that our insurance only covers new glasses every two years. She also told me that we could not afford to pay for new glasses, so I was upset and frustrated,” Brooke explained.

That’s when Holly Wetherbee, Assistant Principal of the Mount Morris Academy, reached out to her friend Jenni Leuzzi, owner of Mill Creek Optical in Dansville.

“I called Brooke’s mom to explain the situation. I asked if it would be ok if I reached out to a friend who might be able to help. Brooke’s Mom was so grateful and she shared Brooke’s prescription information. I called Jenni and asked if she could make a pair of glasses for Brooke. Without any hesitation, Jenni said, ‘Yes.’ Just a few hours later, I walked out of her store with new glasses for Brooke,” Wetherbee said.

Monday morning arrived. As Brooke walked into school, Wetherbee met her at the front door of the Mount Morris Academy and handed her the new glasses. Brooke was speechless and became emotional.

“I was so surprised and I really like my new glasses,” Brooke said. “I’m thrilled that Jenni could help Brooke,” Wetherbee noted.

Leuzzi recently paid a visit to the Mount Morris Academy to check on Brooke and made some adjustments to Brooke’s glasses.

When asked why she so willingly gave her time to make and gift the glasses, she said, “If you can’t see then you can’t learn. Over 80 percent of your learning is done through your eyes. And most importantly, it feels good to make other people happy.”

With tears in her eyes, Brooke turned to Leuzzi and said an emotional thank you.

The Mount Morris Academy is located on the campus of the Mount Morris Career and Technical Education Center.

This school provides a small, nurturing environment, which gives each student the maximum amount of attention necessary to improve academic and social skills. Programs have been specifically designed to provide an educational option for students from component school districts in grades 7-12 whose needs are not met by our traditional secondary schools. Teachers assist students in attaining a high school diploma through maintaining the same academic requirements as home schools.

The Mount Morris Academy and Mount Morris Career and Technical Education Center are programs of the Genesee Valley Educational Partnership. The Partnership operates as a Board of Cooperative Educational Services providing shared programs and services to 22 component school districts located in Genesee, Wyoming, Livingston and Steuben counties in New York state.