A Lamar man is hoping a big win on a national television show will help shape the future.
Of all the careers lee shaver could have had, he chose gunsmithing.
“When I was about 18 years old, I made the conscious decision that I wanted to work with my hands the rest of my life instead of sitting behind a desk,” says Lee Shaver, gunsmith.
Today Shaver operates Lee Shaver Gunsmithing in Lamar. His skills were recently on display to a national audience.
“I was on the Discovery Channel’s ‘Master of Arms,'” says Shaver.
The show pitted Shaver against two other gunsmiths in two rounds of competition.
“The first challenge was a five hour challenge, and we were challenged to build an Indian war club,” says Shaver.
After that, the judges eliminated one competitor, and gave shaver and the other a new challenge.
“A flintlock blunderbuss from the 1870’s,” says Shaver.
Shaver says at first, going on the show was about testing himself.
“Yes, there was a $10,000 prize, but none of us were doing it for the money, because you couldn’t be guaranteed any kind of a payment, so you didn’t go there for that reason. You went there for the challenge. Most of us like a challenge, I know I do. I love a good challenge, and this was something I had never done,” says Lee Shaver.
But being on the show has taken on a new purpose for him.
“I went there for the challenge initially, I found out later, oh my gosh, little kids love these shows. Ten and twelve year old boys and girls are watching this show and going, ‘wow, people can build something by hand?'” says Shaver.
Shaver says while winning was certainly nice, the real prize would be inspiring the next generation to take up the craft he loves.
“Some kid may watch this TV show and go, ‘I want to do that someday,’” says Shaver.
The episode featuring Shaver is scheduled to run again this Friday at three o’clock in the afternoon on the Discovery Channel.