In 1948, Pierre Schunck (1906-1993), stemming from a family of weavers and son of the builder of the famous Glaspaleis in Heerlen, the Netherlands (see Schunck), arrived in Bonaire to set up a clothing industry (Kledingindustrie). This clothing manufacturing would become Bonaire's first real industry, providing employment—and health care—for a large part of the young women who were left behind when many men had left as sailors or to work for the oil companies on Curaçao and Aruba. Preparations for the operation of this company would also result in better electricity and water supplies; eventually it would account for half the exports of the island.
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