The 5-year-old needed a hand. She got one at Clear Lake’s library.

Kyrie O’Connor:

Buying a 3-D printer was out of the question, of course. “Our next option was to find somebody who had one,” she said.

This is where the Clear Lake City-County Freeman Branch Library, and its staff members Jim Johnson and Patrick Ferrell, came in.

Ferrell manages the Maker Space at the library, part of the Harris County Public Library system, which is a workshop area where patrons can use laser cutters and 3-D printers and the like. It’s the only such library space in Southeast Texas. “It’s just another way libraries can offer new services,” Ferrell said. They see everyone from astronauts to artists to schoolchildren come in to use the equipment.

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But Katelyn’s hand was different.

Ferrell and his team of volunteers had never made anything like it.

The Vincik family drove the two-plus hours to Clear Lake to make sure the hand would be measured and scaled correctly.

“We had to do a lot of analyzing,” said Ferrell.