Stockbridge InvenTeam builds adaptive fishing pole to help a boy fish


A perfect fit. Ezra’s parents watch as freshman Chelsea Asquith puts the fishing rod in Ezra’s hand for him to test out the feel of it. PHOTO KAITLIN MILLER.

After school on May 25, 6-year-old Ezra happily received his adaptive fishing rod that the InvenTeam began making for him winter break of 2018.

“After Ezra’s stroke, we were told that he may not walk, talk, eat or use his arm or hand,”  said Ezra’s mother, Jill Mack. “He now does most of these things and some of them with help.”

Freshman Chelsea Asquith, who knew Ezra’s family loves fishing, wanted to help him out by making a brace and an arm mounting device to help him hold onto a fishing rod.

This eventually became known as the Ezra Project which Asquith and other InvenTeam members took on.

“Ezra is actually a family friend. My dad works with his father,” Asquith said. “He seemed to be having trouble fishing, so I talked with my family and I mentioned to them ‘why don’t we make a pole for him so he can go out and fish with his family?’”

In order to build the adaptive pole, the team ordered an electric reel online and obtained a fishing pole, modified the attachments using a 3D printer, and made it so Ezra would be able to hold onto it and that it would fit his wrist.

The InvenTeam adviser Robert Richards thinks that it was a successful task that was accomplished by the team’s determination.

“Once they sat down with him and met him, they knew that their first prototype wasn’t going to work, so they redesigned it and it fit him so much better and it worked better, too,” Richards said. “It was pretty amazing on Friday when we were all done. Everyone left happy and smiling, which that was the first time I’d seen Ezra smile in 6 months. When he had a fishing pole and when he found out he could use it, he was happy.”