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When Vinton hears of a need, Vinton steps up. The side effects of this pandemic have created a shortage of masks for hospitals. As soon as the news hit, a group of nearly 30 area residents began to make plans to help.

Viking Sewing Center has been assisting the group with patterns and directing people to supplies in the effort to meet a potential need in Vinton.

It's not a job just for women I found. Tom Husnik was put to work cutting out the masks and even Jakob Becker, 11 had a crash course in sewing. Terese Husnik sewed the material masks together while Deb Garbers folded and pinned the material, All per Dean Luze's instructions owner of Viking Sewing Center.

Kirk Wright said about his wife's efforts, " Lost my wife to her sewing machine. Getting her system down to knock out masks for the Hospital. I never forget some people make the world a better place just being in it and you are one of them."

She might be under lockdown/held hostage/quarantined at Windsor Manor but Beverly Kenney is not going to let a little thing like her young age of 82 stop her from lending a hand when it's needed either! Probably some of the oldest in the area sewing to save our health care workers or others that might need a mask for their health.

On the other end of the age spectrum, Angie Becker's son and daughter have made 36 so far. Jakob only 11 years old learned to sew so that he could help along with his older sister Anna who is 15. Neither knew how to sew until they found a need that could only be met with this ability. The sewing machine that they are using was ironically from their great grandmother, Mary Becker who is living in assisted living and the kids will be sending her some of their masks. Angie said of the kids that they've got a system set up. She showed them how to make them and they've taken it over.

Others who are cutting/sewing/assembling include the following people: Lynette Bakenhus, Deb Christianson, Kristie Woods, Kimberely Noe, Barbara Anderson, Shawn Gerber, Linda Fischer, Nancy Good, Kris Halberg, Courtney Long, Heather Nesler, Mandy Kakac, Lori Smith, Caroline Dick, Jennie Birker and daughter Izzie, Dawnette Richards, Julie Hessenius, Kelly Wagner, Donna Thompson, June McGowan, Lori McGowan, Julie Hertle, Talli Linnabery, Tiffiny Christophel, Joyce Calvert, who is also making gowns with Vicki Streeter.

I know there are more of you out there, feel free to comment your name if you are among those sewing and I'll gladly add you to the list! Send me a picture and I'll add you to this album as well.

The masks being sewn are created to hold a disposable filter which can be changed.

At this time, the local hospital, Virginia Gay Hospital and the Vinton Lutheran home have requested the masks. Some are also being given to area nursing homes. This group of folks is ready to help whoever needs assistance.

To all of you sharing your skills, thank you from all of the rest of us!

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Comments (7)

To the Board of Directors of the Virginia Gay Hospital, Why aren't we doing more for our doctors and nurses to provide PPE equipment for these essential people? With staff being asked to use their same PPE equipment over again it is crazy in my opinion. Something needs to be done for the people having the most risk. These people need to be treated better than that. Everybody else is giving raises or helping out with free lunches. I realize it’s a community hospital but we need these people at this crucial time. That’s my opinion and I hope somebody takes it to heart, thank you.

Editor's note: Virginia Gay Hospital is NOT in need at this time. The people sewing for friends, relatives, other area nursing facilities, and some even for the Cedar Rapids hospitals. Some have begun to create masks for the local hospital just in case the need arises.
By: Mike Lala on March 27th 12:40pm
I have just started to sew mask and want to say thank you to the Viking Sewing Center for donating the fabric.
By: Judi Hertle on March 27th 1:09pm
My wife, Talli Linnabery sewed a mask for each of the 7 medical staff at the Atkins Virgina Gay branch as well.
By: Tony Linnabery on March 27th 4:39pm
We are so blessed to live in a community (and county)where others are always willing to help others. I'm going to try my hand at this myself. God bless all those that are helping others at this trying time.
By: Ilene Kreider on March 27th 4:56pm
Tiffiny Christophel has also made masks with help.from.some of her family.....She has even sent some to a classmate of ours that lives in Washington State so that she can get them to people in need out there...
By: Angie Mullenix on March 27th 5:40pm
Joyce Calvert is another one making masks and gowns.
By: DEB CHRISTIANSON on March 27th 5:43pm
Thank you Viking Sewing and each and every one of you that are helping! Your hard work will not go unnoticed! God bless you all!
By: Kellie Van Ree on March 31st 7:38pm

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