War: Persian Gulf War, 1991
Branch: Marine Corps
Unit: Military Police Company, Headquarters Battalion, 1st Marine Division
Service Location: Lackland Air Force Base, Texas; Camp Pendleton, California; Twentynine Palms, California; Saudi Arabia; Kuwait; Italy; Paris, France
Enlisting in the Marine Corps in 1989, William Arthur Ehren Tool served in a Military Police unit in Kuwait and Saudi Arabia during the Persian Gulf War, and then at the U.S. embassies in Paris and Rome. Following his service, he used the GI Bill to pursue an undergraduate degree, where he discovered his vocation, ceramic arts, and then began making small ceramic cups decorated with images and shapes evoking violence and war. To date, he has crafted over 14,000 of these cups. In his oral history interview, conducted as part of the PBS documentary series “Craft in America,” he discusses the connection between his service and his art.
We honor you, William Tool.