A friend in need deserves a mask, indeed.

Three women with Dawson Springs ties have taken it upon themselves to make fabric medical masks for those who need them.

Tammy Workman, who once owned a florist and notions shop in Dawson Springs, said people she knows who work in the medical field asked her to make some masks.

So she logged on to Pinterest and YouTube to watch tutorial videos and then got started. Because she sews and quilts as a hobby, she had several of the materials on hand. Some people came by her house and dropped off elastic she could use to make the masks.

As of Tuesday afternoon, she has made more than 100 masks. The masks she made have gone to many places, including Madisonville Health and Rehabilitation, The Paragon of Madisonville, the hospital and individual nurses who have contacted her.

Across town, Ashley McKnight and her daughter, Kara, are busy making masks.

“They are pretty easy,” McKnight said. “I’ve been asking people to just donate elastic or money to buy more supplies so we can keep going.”

Kara, who is a third-grader at Dawson Springs Elementary School, has been learning with nontraditional instruction at home and now is learning life skills from her mom, who has a side business, Princess and Pirates Boutique in Dawson Springs. McKnight is also a teacher and bus driver with Dawson Springs Independent Schools.

"Getting Kara involved wasn't hard," McKnight said. "She has been begging to use my sewing machine by herself forever. Sewing is a life skill I feel students today miss out on learning. As crazy as these NTI days are right now as a teacher/bus driver/parent, I'm glad to be able to take a step back with her and just enjoy my time at the kitchen table teaching her."

Kara said she is glad to "finally" learn how to use the sewing machine and hopes her masks help people to not get sick. 

Employees from Ridgewater Terrace and Tradewater Health and Rehab have approached McKnight for fabric masks.

The McKnight crew has made more than 100 masks so far. Elastic has been scarce at her house, but several people have left some on her front porch. She and Workman consulted about pattern sizing.

Marcella McCuiston, also a teacher at Dawson Springs, saw a post on Facebook about a medical facility needing fabric masks. She consulted YouTube and touched base with Workman and McKnight to get started. She dug fabric and elastic out of her collection.

McCuiston, a breast cancer survivor, planned to take some of the masks with her to donate to follow-up appointments Thursday at the Vanderbilt Breast Clinic in Nashville, but the appointments were canceled. She plans to contact the clinic to see about mailing some masks, but added that she will donate to whoever needs them. 

“I wish we could produce more a day,” McKnight said. “There are so many in need for them.”