Click here for the latest coronavirus news, which the Union Leader has made free for the public. You can support our critical reporting on the coronavirus by purchasing a digital subscription.

When Dustin Coleman started hearing about the shortage of personal protective equipment hitting the Sullivan County Nursing home, he knew his Unity business could help.

“We have a really nice sewing facility here that has great equipment and great people,” he said.

Dustin and his wife Liene Coleman own Cole-Tac, a maker of firearms bags and accessories. The business turns out heavy canvas bags and other gear for shooters and hunters, and Dustin thought that with a little retooling he could use his business to make gowns and masks to protect the nurses and staff at the county nursing home down the road.

Dustin Coleman also wanted to find a way to keep his employees working, and he figures this temporary change in business will make them essential in case of a shutdown.

Dustin bought out all the medical-grade cotton material he could find in the area, and ordered another pallet of material. Then he and his team converted some of the machinery to be able to sew the gowns and masks.

The business is now geared to turn out about 100 gowns a day, and many masks, to meet the needs at the nursing home. Dustin Coleman said he started getting contact from hospitals and other organizations about the products and hopes to keep going as long as he can find the material.

Saturday, May 30, 2020