October 17, 2001 | By: Laura Skillman

4-H members from Daviess County put the finishing touches on quilts last week that will soon be headed to Washington, D.C. and to youth who lost a family member during the Sept. 11 terrorist attack.

Sarah Horn, a sophomore at Daviess County High School said she hoped the children who receive the quilts can find some comfort in the knowledge that others care about their sorrow.

"We want to show that someone in Kentucky and in 4-H cares," she said. "We want them to look at these quilts and see that we've worked hard on them and there is hope and that we can spread it."

4-Hers in the county have made helping hand quilts for several years with the quilts being donated to someone who'd suffered some trauma. Many of the quilts went to youngsters who stay at the Daniel Pitino Shelter in Owensboro.

But, 4-H volunteer Beth Horn suggested that this year they send them instead to the national 4-H headquarters in Washington D.C., where they would then be given to a child who lost a family member when the hijacked plane flew into the Pentagon.

Students from more than a dozen schools helped make the brightly colored hands that adorn the quilt, said Joyce Kirby, 4-H program assistant. The elementary students primarily do the artwork on the quilts while high school students help put the pieces together to form the quilts.

Twenty-one quilts will be sent. Seven are large quilts containing the outlines of 20 hands, colored and designed by Daviess County 4-H members. The fourteen smaller quilts contain 15 squares. That's 350 helping hands.

"For our children a dollar doesn't mean as much as this," Beth Horn said. "They say, I sent my thing - my personality. And they know these are for comfort, and aid and good thoughts and so it is like they sent a personal part of their heart to them."

Last week, they were putting the quilts together, installing the batting and tying strings through it to keep it in place, said Beth Persons, a high school junior.

Persons has helped make quilts for several years. She said getting the quilts to the Pentagon families was important.

"It's so sad - that somebody could do that to them," she said.

Materials are donated by the Extension 4-H council and homemakers clubs.

Elementary student Matthew Horn was helping out last week tying knots.

"We are using the square knots because they hold together better and they are real small," he said.

He's also made hands and likes to make them look like animals such as a wolf, frog or giraffe. But last week, as he was demonstrating how to make the hands, he chose to design one to resemble the U.S. flag.


Joyce Kirby, (270) 685-8480