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Students Work on Prosthetic Arm for Classmate

Updated: Tuesday, December 3 2013, 11:13 AM EST
EDGEWOOD, Ky. (Tiffany Wilson) -- Starting a new school mid-way through the year isn't easy.  When you only have one arm, the new kid questions can be even tougher to answer.This was the situation a seventh grader found herself in just a few weeks ago.  What the students at Turkey Foot Middle School did next will inspire you.

Sitting at her desk with a stack of books, Makaylayla Murphy dutifully writes in her seventh grade notebook. It's not until she stands up that you might notice something unique.

"When I was inside my mom's belly, the umbilical cord got wrapped around my hand and somehow it just came off," Makaylayla said. Her left arm stops just below the elbow. "It's actually really hard to do a lot of stuff with one hand." But she gets by surprisingly well. Just a few weeks ago, Makaylayla transferred to Turkey Foot Middle School with a new set of students. "I was really nervous when I walked in because everybody was just staring at me like, I don't know about her."

Then Makaylayla entered Mr. Humphry's class. "We have done a prosthetic challenge in my bio-med class for the last couple years. And the challenge has always been, create an arm when they pull a string that it moves and they had to pick up a weight, a drink, write with a pencil," Dwayne Humphry said. This quarter, he challenged his students to find someone who could test the prosthetic arm. "Five days after that, Makaylayla shows up at my door."

Suddenly, the school project turned into a real life opportunity to help. Eighth grader Kyle Kelley poured hours into designing the perfect finger. Kelly said, "it's an adventure that we're taking to complete this hand for Makaylayla."

Once the designs are ready, a 3-D printer will get to work turning a rope of plastic into a prosthetic prototype. Mr. Humphry believes his class will give Makaylayla a functioning arm. They've already given her something else, something even more precious."It don't matter if you have one arm or not, you're just like everybody else," she said.
Students Work on Prosthetic Arm for Classmate


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