High school students make prosthetic arm for third grader

BRENHAM, Texas - For 8-year-old Ja'Lea Henderson, school is one of her favorite places to be. But it doesn't take long to realize that she is unique. 

"She was born with an amniotic band syndrome," said her mother, Kia Nunn. "We weren't aware when I was pregnant with her. We didn't know until she was born."

The condition left her with limited use of her right arm, making things that are easy for many people a challenge for her.

But with an pink and purple prosthetic arm, which she received just last week, things are easier. 

"I haven't learned how to write with it yet but I think that's what I want," said Henderson.

But what may be even more special is where the prosthetic arm came from. 

Over the past two years, students studying computer science at Brenham High School have been researching and trying to find a solution for Henderson. With the help of a 3-D printer, they were able to craft the prosthetic arm. 

"We have strings running through it and they go from the part that's above her elbow, from her forearm going through this, and then to the fingers," said Benjamin Hart, who helped design the arm. 

The new arm also allows Henderson to do more than she could before. That means she can now dress herself. 

"Now I can do it by myself and I don't need any help from my mom and dad," said Henderson.

But what she's probably most excited about is her new ability to type with both hands. Something her mother is grateful for.

"I'm trying to hold back the tears. I've cried and I've cried. But it's just an amazing feeling," said Nunn. 

 

(© 2016 KAGS)


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