Goshen News, Goshen, IN

Breaking News

April 19, 2013

Sandy Hook inspires invention

BENTON ­— Darin Holsopple sat in his classroom, staring at the door, a problem weighing heavily on his mind and heart.

It was Dec. 17, 2012, the first school day after the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre. All the Fairfield seventh-grade math teacher and father of three could think about was how he would protect his students should the unthinkable happen.

He stared at the door. All he could see was the window above the handle. It had bothered him each and every time he and his students ran a lockdown drill. As soon as he came up with a solution, he tossed it aside. A desk or a pile of books was not going to stop an intruder from breaking the glass and opening the locked door.

But in light of recent events, he was not going to sit by and hope nothing happened.

Holsopple did the only thing he could think to do, and that was sit in his classroom and pray.

“Almost immediately, I had an idea and general design,” he said. “I really feel this is something God has given to me to help protect kids.”

His original idea was a simple block of wood that could fit over the door’s lever-style handle. Over the next few days, he tinkered with it and came up with a latching mechanism for it as well. The Security Door Block was born.

Once he thought he had something workable, he headed to the school office to get feedback from administrators. He happened to catch Principal Ben Tonagel, Superintendent Steve Thalheimer and School Resource Officer Daphne Coy, who all thought he was onto something.

“I thought it was an innovative way to address a concern,” Thalheimer said.

An advantage Tonagel noticed right away was its size – the Security Door Block is small, easy to access and easy to install.

“This has a lot of potential to meet needs in schools,” he said.

Holsopple pursued his idea and attended a number of fire code meetings in Indianapolis. When he first presented the idea to fire officials and other code enforcement officers, they loved it.

“They jumped all over it and really encouraged me to move on with it,” he said.

Holsopple enjoys tinkering and small home projects, but had no idea where to begin in finding a manufacturer for his project. He discussed his problem with a fellow elder at his church, and another solution came to him. His friend thought his employer, Poly-Wood in Syracuse, could do it.

They could.

In a whirlwind over the next few months, Holsopple received a provisional patent, created a web site, and almost as soon as the web site was live, started getting inquiries and orders. He received his first box of prototypes last week.

“There is such a need,” Holsopple said. “No child should ever have to feel in danger when they’re in school and no parent should feel apprehensive when they send their child to school.”

He loves teaching and coaching, and doesn’t want to give that up or try to run a business on the side. His hope is that over the next year or so, he can license the Security Door Block to a larger company and see them in place in schools, businesses, day cares and churches across the country.

Thalheimer said that officially, the corporation is examining the perimeters of buildings first, and then could see administrators considering the Security Door Block in the second tier of security measures.  

If Fairfield does place an order, Holsopple said he knows where he will start. The thoughts that brought him the idea may have been how to keep the students in his classroom safe, but his first act of doing so will be that of a father.

“As soon as I get measurements,” he said, “I want to make the first delivery to my daughter’s kindergarten classroom.”

For more information, visit www.securitydoorblock.com.

1
Text Only
Breaking News
  • Clinton Frame leaving IN-MI Mennonite Conference over same-sex marriage

    After nearly 100 years of being in the Indiana-Michigan Mennonite Conference, Clinton Frame Mennonite Church officials announced it will be leaving because of the controversy related to same-sex marriage.

    July 24, 2014

  • Red D Mart armed robbery New Paris Police ask for public's help in identifying would-be robber

    Elkhart County police have released still photos captured from video of the man who attempted to hold up Red D Mart gas station, 68310 Ind. 15, New Paris, on Saturday, July 19.

    July 23, 2014 2 Photos

  • Red Cross in urgent need of donors

    The American Red Cross is facing a blood shortage, leading to an urgent need for donors of all blood types to roll up a sleeve and give.

    July 23, 2014

  • Huron Street residents under boil order

    Tuesday morning, Goshen water crews shut down the water main on Huron Street to replace a broken fire hydrant.
    The Indiana Department of Environmental Management requires the Water Utility to issue a boil water order for the affected area, which is Huron Street from West Lincoln to Pike Street.

    July 23, 2014

  • GN140723 CR34-Ind. 13 Crash 1 LaGrange man airlifted from scene of crash A motorcyclist was seriously injured in a crash at Ind. 13 and C.R. 34 at 1:48 p.m. Tuesday. Terry Fry, 44, LaGrange, was airlifted by MedFlight from the scene. Elkhart County police said he was taken to South Bend Memorial Hospital with fractures to

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Suspicious blinking package with battery pack causes police to evacuate business area

    A package with a battery pack and a blinking red light found on the desk of an employee at MSC, 28551 Laura Court, Elkhart, caused police and firefighters to evacuate the area this morning.
    The package turned out to be a GPS tracking device and not a bomb.

    July 22, 2014

  • Cat beaten to death in burglary

    A house cat was found beaten to death following a burglary at a home in Howe Sunday.

    July 21, 2014

  • GN140721 Kosciusko Fatal Photo #2.jpg Fiery crash kills one, critically injures two in North Webster

    A fiery crash in North Webster left a Pennsylvania man dead and two others critically injured at 3:21 p.m. Sunday on Ind. 13, near Esterbrook Drive.

    July 21, 2014 4 Photos

  • GN140719 obit mcdaniel Jeanine M. McDaniel OSCEOLA — Jeanine M. McDaniel, 61, died Thursday afternoon at Elkhart Hospice House. She was born Feb. 16, 1953 in Noble County, to Everett and Nyra Lucille (Reynolds) McDaniel. Surviving are two sisters, Patty (William) Wray, Paducah, Ky. and Bever

    July 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • GN140718 Rosalie Bontrager senior fair queen.jpg Bontrager wins senior queen title

    Rosalie Bontrager was crowned senior fair queen at the grandstand at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair Friday morning, July 18, 2014.

    July 18, 2014 1 Photo

Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
AP Video
Death Penalty Expert: 'This is a Turning Point' House Committee at Odds Over Obama Lawsuit Raw: MH17 Victim's Bodies Arrive in Netherlands Raw: UN School Used As Shelter Hit by Tank Shell Raw: Gunmen Attack Iraqi Prison Convoy Plane Leaves Ukraine With More Crash Victims The Rock Brings Star Power to Premiere Raw: Families Travel to Taiwan Plane Crash Site Arizona Execution Takes Almost Two Hours Gen. Odierno Discusses Ukraine, NATO at Forum Gaza Fighting Rages Amid Cease-Fire Efforts Mint Gives JFK Coin a Face-lift Creative Makeovers for Ugly Cellphone Towers Ariz. Inmate Dies 2 Hours After Execution Began Crash Kills Teen Pilot Seeking World Record LeBron James Sends Apology Treat to Neighbors Raw: Funeral for Man Who Died in NYPD Custody Migrants Back in Honduras After US Deports Israeli American Reservist Torn Over Return
Poll

Last weekend (July 12) the Goshen Parks Department held its Kid’s Try-athlon to promote childhood fitness and this week (July 18) the new bicycle trail is open to the fairgrounds in Goshen, offering residents a healthy way to get to the annual agriculture exposition. Have you joined the local fitness movement?

Yes, I work at eating healthy and exercising
No, I am happy with my fitness level
Changing my diet and exercise frequency is a work in progress
     View Results