Teacher Makes Thousands of Face Shields for Medical Workers Fighting Coronavirus, Including Son

“Weeks ago, I would have been happy if I could have just made a thousand,” Hofmann says. “We feel like every one of these that we get in a medical worker's hands can help save their life."

Meanwhile, across the state, Justin is continuing to treat clinic patients out of Newark's University Hospital, helping doctors, nurses and other staffers who are treating COVID-19 patients when he can.

Life seems better than it was a month ago, he says, but it’s still far from normal. Most of his clinic work is done remotely from home as the hospital strives to minimize how many staffers are exposed to the virus.

Around the hospital, his dad has become somewhat of a celebrity. “Nurses will come up to me and say they were using a ‘Hofmann mask’ this morning and thank the family,” Justin says. “They’re so grateful, it’s really wonderful to see.”

The ongoing coronavirus pandemic has hit home for Hofmann in more ways than one: many of his students, too, are essential workers, reporting to grocery stores after class to help people safely get the supplies they need.

“They’re happy to go to work, they think it’s important,” he says.

Justin echoed his father’s sentiments: “It’s one of the things we can learn from tragedies: seeing ordinary people come together to help each other.”

The reminder is permanently etched on every face shield Hofmann makes: “Lovingly crafted by many thankful hands in Newton, NJ, USA. Stay safe!”

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