STORY: Cochran teen spends time sewing masks

Breeann stays busy at her sewing machine making masks. (Bohannon Photo)

COCHRAN, GEORGIA: In March, Georgia Governor Brian Kemp, as part of preventative measures to slow the spread of the coronavirus, called for all schools to close to the end of the month … toward the first of April, as the numbers of infected persons, and deaths from the virus begin to rise in the state, and in the United States, Kemp went ahead and canceled school for the rest of the year.

After being home a few days with no school, Breeann Bohannon, age 17, started “looking for something to do.”

She began to sew masks for first responders, firefighters, law enforcement and medical personnel, and members of her community.

The daughter of Chad and Stephanie Bohannon, and sister to Blake, Breeann wanted to do something to help.

Breeann said, “With being stuck at home, because of the coronavirus, I was wondering what to do with no school.”

She added, “After watching the news, and seeing all the doctors and nurses on the front lines fighting this virus with a lack of supplies, I wanted to help out.”

“So, I looked up some sewing patterns for masks, and I tweaked a few patterns to make masks that look good, and wear good for people who need them,” Breeann explained. “It started off with my mom putting a few finished masks on Facebook to sell for $5.” Her mom explained that money helps pay for materials.

“But those who who work in the medical field, firefighters, first responders, and police officers would get them for free … because doing what they do I felt like they should not have to pay for something like a face mask … that they need so they can save others.”

Breeann added, “I felt like I chose this job, because I felt like I could do some better with my time by helping others.” Her mom said Breeann works hard, and spends long hours sewing.

Because of her efforts, a local banking officer nominated Breeann for The Murphy Gazette’s Good Neighbor Profile.

Very appreciative of the honor, Breeann defined what she felt a ‘good neighbor’ should be.

“A good neighbor to me is being kind, helpful and respectful to others, while expecting nothing in return,” she said, continuing, “I believe being a good neighbor is supporting others in , and treating others the way you want to be treated.”

Breeann is a volunteer with the county fire department. “I go about being a good neighbor by volunteering at with the fire department, so I can help them and someone in need.”

She said, “You don’t have to be close to someone to help someone in need. For example, you can donate canned food in a food drive, you can donate money, toys and clothes to those who maybe can’t afford them, or for those who can’t get them.”

“That is what I feel like being a good neighbor means,” Breeann stated.

As the country … the world … is going through hard times, Breeann thought about times in her own life. “I have not personally gone through a hard time where I felt like I would not make it, but I have gone through a hard time where I lost most of my hearing in one ear, and I have to wear a hearing aid.”

“As I went through the process of surgeries and hearing aids, I overcame the fear and the burden of hearing loss with my trust in God,” Breeann said. “Faith in God can go a long way. He is always there and his plan will always be greater than yours, and will always be followed through. You just have to trust in Him to guide you along the path.”

In offering encouraging words to anyone going through a tough time, she thought for a minute. “Stay positive, be strong, and you can get through this. I would also tell them to talk to someone that they trust like friends, family and God, because God is with you, and nothing happens without a reason, and it’s all a part of God’s glorious plan.”

One of Breeann’s favorite verses comes from Psalm 23:4. “Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will not fear no evil … for thou art with me … thy rod and staff, they comfort me.”

“I like this verse because it shows that God will always be there for us no matter what our troubles may be.”

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