CHICAGO (CBS) — It can be hard to help during the COVID-19 pandemic while staying at home – indeed, it’s a pickle for those who want to pitch in.

But one nurse in East Lakeview had an idea. However, she couldn’t do it alone.

So as nurse Terry Ratner explained to CBS 2’s Brad Edwards, her building is now a socially-distanced assembly line.

Ratner is a writer as well as being a registered nurse. Her idea was that her building could make masks.

“We could do it and still stay distanced. We could make masks here,” she said. “We have a Facebook page for our condo, and I started with that and it kind of boomeranged.”

As of Wednesday, 70 masks had already been delivered to a hospital, and 70 more are expected by week’s end – all thanks to that one building on Aldine Avenue.

Everyone is pitching in – Kristie, Kelly, Larry, Betty, Rachelle, Ryan, Loren, Katie, Guy, Larry, and Jill – and of course, Terry herself.

The masks they’re making are in part intended to supplement N95 masks – they are made with an opening for a filter. Some incoming patients can also put them on as a triage barrier

“This is so purposeful, what we’re doing, and in times like this, it can give you joy,” Ratner said. “There’s not a lot of joy you hear about.”

One neighbor on Wednesday donated their grandma’s linens. And now, the neighbors an Aldine are known as the Angels on Aldine.

They’re putting a call out for more elastic and performance fabric. If you can help, contact Ratner at

Brad Edwards