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Harlingen Glass Founder Gonzales Passes Away

Claudio Gonzales, the founder of Harlingen Glass Co. in Harlingen, Texas, passed away on February 26 at his home. Gonzales also was a founding member of the Texas Glass Association (TGA), a past president of the TGA and a past president of the Rio Grande Valley Glass Association.

Gonzales, who retired from Harlingen in 2001, died of a heart attack at the age of 76. He is survived by two daughters, Sandra Tovar and Jerry Ingles, and five grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his wife, Dora, who died earlier this year.

"We owe Claudio a great deal of thanks for his efforts to help build the TGA," says Ray Soliz of Harlingen Glass Co., who also serves as a TGA board member and has known Gonzales since 1986. "He was very influential—he was a mentor."

Soliz and Gonzales founded two companies during their time working together, Custom Glass and Coastal Glass, both in Texas.

"Claudio was one of the gentle giants of the industry," adds™/AGRR magazine publisher Deb Levy. "Anyone who ever met him would never forget him."

As of this afternoon, the funeral arrangements had not been made.

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