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High School Students Building Prosthetic Hand For Injured Veteran

MODESTO (CBS13) — It's a special school project that is having an impact beyond the classroom.

Students in Modesto are designing a prosthetic hand for a Stockton veteran who was injured while serving in the Middle East.

Students at Beyer High School are working on all sorts of projects, but there is one, in particular, helping change lives.

Thirteen years ago while on a mission in the Middle East, army veteran Jose Jauregui's life changed forever. His company came under fire from the enemy.

"Our tank got hit with a rocket, and it blew up. I was inside. All of our gun powder and all of our ammunition kind of blew up," he said.

About 75 percent of Jauregui's body was burned, he lost most of his left hand, and he lost the use of his right hand. Now, the Beyer High School's robotics team is stepping up to help.

"It's almost indescribable, being able to see that you're making a change, not only for someone but hopefully to help change the community in the process," said Danielle Haubrich, freshman, Beyer High School.

The students have come up with a prototype that started on a 3D printer. The team is in the process of making a prosthetic hand to allow Jauregui play softball again.

"Going into it we didn't know much, it was hard to figure everything out, which why he had to go through a second attempt. Making sure that the numbers were right," said Mark Wright, junior at Beyer High School.

In their first attempt, students used an open source, but they could not adapt the design to fit Jauregui's needs. Students redesigned the prosthetic hand, and for the first time, Jauregui was fitted for the new hand that will allow him to do a lot of things.

"I think, it would be amazing, this is just the beginning really. It's advancing so fast," said Jauregui.

The students are still working on the prosthetic. The plan is to take more measurements and include new data they have collected before things are finalized.

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