Bedding manufacturer donates pillows to health care workers

2020-04-25 18:00:05 - EEUU

Eugene Alletto’s two siblings are working on the frontlines of the coronavirus outbreak in Long Island hospitals and when he received a troubling text message from his sister, he knew he had to help.

Eugene Alletto’s two siblings are working on the frontlines of the coronavirus outbreak in Long Island hospitals and when he received a troubling text message from his sister, he knew he had to help.

The text was a picture of exhausted health care workers sleeping on the floors and leaning up against one another in a makeshift break room as they took quick naps between their brutal shifts.

Alletto, the CEO and founder of bedding company Bedgear, felt his heart break.

“Where’s the pillows?” he asked his sister.

“Pillows? It’s with all the patients. We don’t have extra s–t laying around. We just lay here for, you know, 40, 50 minutes between shifts,” the sister replied.

And that’s when Alletto’s idea was born. Instead of rearranging his factory to make medical masks, something they didn’t have the expertise or supplies to accomplish, he decided to start manufacturing thousands of pillows that he could donate to health care workers across the country — beginning with 12 New York hospitals.

“None of the things we make are going to filter out any sort of significant virus,” Alletto told The Post.

“It’s not my core business and frankly, it just made more sense to us to do something that we’re good at that allows all of our employees, hundreds of them, to feel like they’re sending some love in that direction.”

Under the program, Alletto was able to keep his factories moving, his workers paid, and provide worn out health care workers with a small bit of comfort as they faced a crushing number of patients, soaring deaths and the most vicious disease many of them have ever encountered.

On Friday, Alletto made the first round of 2,200 pillow donations, starting with Stony Brook Southampton Hospital.

“Some of [the health care workers] have to spend the night, they can’t leave their units because they’re basically contaminated. So they’re kind of restricted to their units,” explained Eugene’s sister, Danielle Alletto, a medical social worker.

“It’s a little piece of home that they don’t have with them at the time. They can rest their head, they can have a moment of comfort, a moment of silence, just kind of unwind because they’re not getting home to their beds, half of these staff members, at night.”

Keith Alletto, who handles emergency preparedness, said health care workers are now using closets for office space and are suffering as they work sometimes double and triple shifts.

The pillows “just give them a sense that they can at least relax for a minute, you know, put their head down for a minute, decompress a little because, you know, our staff is in these units for sometimes 16 hours a day dealing with this,” Keith said.

“It’s definitely something needed.”

Do you have a nominee for The Post’s Hero of the Day? Email heroes@nypost.com.

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