‘The right thing to do’: Stark County teen, family print hundreds of free mask extenders for health care workers

Cleveland's Own helping Cleveland's Own

Alec Ousley (Photo Credit: Facebook)

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MASSILLON, Ohio (WJW) — A 17-year-old Canton South High School student has found a way, with help from his family, to assist countless health care workers in Northeast Ohio thanks to a gift he got for Christmas two years ago.

Alec Ousley has been working 24/7 to produce single mask extenders using a 3D printer. He thought of the idea after hearing that health care workers were getting blisters or sores from the elastic on their masks rubbing behind their ears.

His mother, Mindy Beth, a teacher at Perry Local Schools, posted about the project on Facebook.

She said Alec got a kit to build the printer for Christmas about two years ago. He built it from scratch, and it’s been modified several times.

Mindy says in her post that Alec prints five extenders at a time, and it takes about an hour and 15 minutes per set.

Then, his sister, Mikayla, writes encouraging, personal messages to go with the extenders in each envelope. Mindy handles the messages and requests. Then, they either mail out the orders or place them in a no-contact bin on their front porch, where they can be picked up.

The extenders are free to those who need them, and they’ve gotten orders from all over the country. They so far have produced about 350 extenders.

“He wants to do this because he feels helping is the right thing to do,” she said.

Mindy said they will print the extenders for as long as they need to. In fact, they’re working on several large orders.

They said donations are not required or expected. But many have wanted to help, so they set up a PayPal account for contributions.

For more information, check out the post below:

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