Indianapolis News and HeadlinesWorking Together


Working Together: Manufacturing PPE for healthcare workers

Fatheadz Eyewear.JPG
Posted at 9:25 PM, Apr 15, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-19 15:06:37-04

Working Together is a new WRTV initiative that focuses on telling impactful stories highlighting the wide range of cultures, areas and people that make central Indiana the place that it is. Through our Working Together initiative, we will share the stories of our communities and carry their voices forward. We’re Working for You by Working Together.

SPEEDWAY — The state of Indiana is working to make sure there is enough personal protection equipment for those who are on the front line of the COVID-19 pandemic. The state has teamed up with numerous companies in Indiana who are now shifting their production lines.

One of those businesses is Fatheadz Eyewear in Speedway.

"At Fatheadz Eyewear we make eyewear for people with larger than normal heads like me," Rico Elmore, of Fatheadz Eyewear, said.

The company typically specialize in glasses and sunglasses but now the focus has shifted to safety goggles, safety glasses and face shields.

"My whole idea with this was you know let's start doing personal protection equipment I had the opportunity and was able to find the right people to partner and team up with to do this manufacturing," Elmore said.

Fatheadz is just one of several Hoosier companies working with the state to provide these type of supplies to front line medical workers. Between Fatheadz and other local businesses, the Indiana Economic Development Corporation has been able to secure more than 2.6 million pieces of various PPE.

"We are very honored to be part of it, me and all the people that I work with here," Elmore said.

Elmore said they drop the equipment off for the National Guard who then distributes it to area medical facilities. The company has also gotten requests for PPE from numerous other states and private hospitals so he's hoping to increase production.

"Really what it boiled down to was it was about trying to help the folks on the front line stay safe," Elmore said. "Secondly it was about providing for my work family here and trying to make sure that we all still have a place to go when this is all over because it will be over but it isn't quite yet."