College students design device that helps stroke patient hug his grandsons

Four college students developed a tool that lets Kevin Eubanks do something he hadn't done in eight years: hug his grandchildren.

Eubanks' daughter, Emily Sisco, is an occupational therapy assistant and adjunct professor at Arkansas State University. Eight years ago, Eubanks had a massive stroke, which left him with weakness in his left arm. For a recent class project, Sisco asked her students to make a piece of adaptive equipment for her dad; she showed them a video of Eubanks completing daily tasks, and they were able to FaceTime him to ask about his likes and dislikes.

After Eubanks shared that he missed being able to fully embrace his loved ones, students Lisa James, Larissa Garcia, Erica Dexter, and Casey Parsons decided to team up and create the "HugAgain." It's a strap that Eubanks is able to "grab with the other hand and wrap around another person," James explained to Today.

The first time he used the HugAgain with his grandchildren, Eubanks burst into tears. This device, as well as others made for him by Sisco's students, left him overjoyed, and Eubanks told Today he hopes his story can encourage others to "never give up. I want them to see that after eight years of not being able to hug, I now can again, so don't ever give up."

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