Spouses Club delivers protective gear to Airmen, hospital

  • Published
  • By Ilka Cole

Airmen and 96th Medical Group members just received an abundance of personal protective equipment thanks to the Eglin Spouses Club.

Approximately 700 face masks and 300 face shields were donated to Team Eglin members in April.  The second delivery of 253 items of PPE April 17 far surpassed the ESC’s initial April 10 donation of 47 masks and 14 shields. The deliveries will continue in the coming weeks.

“We want to help out where we can. Our mission at the ESC is to provide for the Airmen and our families in any way to make life easier for them,” said Regan Zick, president ESC. “This is one important thing we can do to take care of our Airmen so their families feel they are going to work safely.”

The masks will be distributed by the First Shirts Council first to Airmen, who have not yet received an issued mask, and then to others based on priority. The face shields will be distributed within the 96th MDG. Extra masks will be offered to the civilian work force and dependents.

The donation idea came from when Eglin’s Air Force Association reached out to the ESC to see if they had ideas on how to help the base’s Airmen and families during the crisis.

“Once DOD announced masks were going to be required on installations, I knew the answer,” said Michelle Cain, ESC member.

The ESC worked with STEMWERX, a local veteran-owned company to get most of the PPE.  The cloth masks are hand-sewn with a feature allowing for the insertion of a filter between the layers and a bendable nose bridge.  The face shields are 3D printed.  The PPE-making effort grew to involve many other community partners and on base organizations also donating.

“It’s important to do this, we want to prevent the spread of germs, not only the coronavirus, but other pathogens. We want everyone to be safe. We care about your health and well-being,” said Senior Master Sgt. Natasha McCracken, 96th Logistics Readiness Squadron 1st Sergeant.

To learn more about the ESC, see their website.