Little Seahawks helmets helping kids
SEATTLE -- Lucas Vukelic comes from a family of huge Seahawk fans, but that's not the reason for his helmet.
The gregarious, easily excitable 10-month old boy wears one 23 hours a day to reshape a flat spot on his head. It only comes off for bathing.
The child's parents say his old medical helmet was "blah" baby blue and drew sad stares from strangers.
"They would come up and say, 'Oh gosh, we're so sorry,'" said his mother, Melissa Holbert. "So we thought oh man, there's gotta be a better, more fun way to go about this."
Holbert considered paint, but figured it would chip off with her child falling all the time. She thought about Seahawk stickers, but doubted she could make them look good on her son's helmet. That's when she went searching online and found Quinton Steckler.
Steckler owns WrapJax in Tacoma, a company that vinyl wraps cars.
"I have a nephew that had to wear a cranial helmet for awhile, so it really strikes a chord," he said.
Steckler tackled the project for free and has wrapped Hawk helmets for three children.
"Every time they go in for a check up or grocery store they get looks of pity when they have to wear these helmets. And that doesn't happen any more," he said.
Lucas is no longer viewed as a medical mystery. He's just seen as a kid wearing a hawk helmet.
"People could see Lucas with the helmet on, they couldn't help themselves, they would immediately smile. They would come up and give him a high five and be like, 'Hey, dude, good for you.' And what a response. It made everybody feel better including us as a family," Holbert said..
Word of the wraps spread on Facebook, and that's how Tia Strasser scored a fashionable way to compat the uneasy looks little Oliver's camo helmet attracted.
"It was ugly it was not attractive," Strasser said. "People would look, but it was awkward and uncomfortable and you didn't get talked to about it."
Now the helmets that parents dreaded and couldn't wait to remove have become a source of Seahawk pride.
"Hopefully, when in the Superbowl we'll still be wearing the helmet," Strasser said.