The Superior Express -

Superior Seamstresses Specializing in Masks


January 7, 2021

Diana Kranau (left) and Judy Mohler have produced and donated more than 8,500 hand crafted masks for Superior schools and medical facilities among others. The two cut the fabric and sewed the masks in Mohler's kitchen. The two have been making the masks since late March, 2020.

There are some for whom practicing random acts of kindness is a way of life. Two such Superior residents are Diana Kranau and Judy Mohler.

The two, who are cousins and were born and raised in Superior, saw a need for kindness with the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mohler, and her husband, Denny, returned to Superior, after a 28-year stay in Lincoln. Mohler has been motivated to help children with special needs over the years.

The Mohlers purchased the house where Diana grew up. After renovations were complete, they moved in and settled into their life in Superior. Diana was a frequent visitor to the house where she grew up with her father.

Judy saw the need for face masks when COVID-19 began making inroads into the daily routine of area residents. The suggestion that masks were an effective way to slow the spread of the disease spurred her into action. She contacted Diana and asked if she would be interested in joining with her in a mask manufacturing endeavor. Diana readily agreed.

The first problem the duo encountered was sourcing a supply of elastic for the masks. This issue was resolved by late March, 2020, and the two began sewing masks in earnest.

The pair are no slackers when it comes to producing masks. They have perfected their system and churn out 75 of more masks per day.

The production total surpassed 8,500 masks this week.

The cozy kitchen of the Mohler residence serves double duty as a mask production work place. Finished masks line every available bit of counter space. One could probably substitute a mask for a coffee filter in an emergency or accidentally as they are lined up all around the coffee maker. Literally hundreds of masks await packaging and distribution.

The Superior Public School system has been the main beneficiary of their largesse. More than 2,550 masks have been donated to the school.

Brodstone Memorial Hospital has received more than 1,400 masks. Mohler's daughters, who reside in Lincoln, have accepted masks for use in schools in that city. The Superior Good Samaritan Society facility has been the recipient of masks.

The production process has been streamlined. The pair makes masks in four different sizes, two adult and two youth.

The process begins with fabric being placed over different sized dinner plates so the fabric can be cut in a circle. Diana works at night so Judy does the cutting at this time. The fabric is then sewn for the first time. Diana then turns the fabric inside out and irons it. Judy does the final sewing when installing the elastic.

The pair keep things on a light note, listening to golden oldies music.

Judy has worn out one sewing machine. When it came time to order a new one, an unexpected check in the amount needed appeared in the mail.

The two are always teasing each other with the easy comfort of a lifelong friendship. They have named their scissors Augie, Dot and Jen.

One early example illustrates how the pair respond to the needs of the community. When the Superior High School girls basketball team was headed to the state tournament at Lincoln, the team required masks, 44 of them in black and white, to be exact. Thanks to a donation of black fabric from Patty Kramp, Diana and Judy finished the masks in time for the team to wear them at the state event.

As word spread of their handiwork, requests for masks came in from many sources. They have shipped masks to seven states and numerous schools. They are self-effacing when asked about this. They are having fun while contributing to the health and well-being of numerous individuals in diverse locations. Couldn't ask for more than laughter, love and compassion for their fellow man.


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