SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WAND) - Two Springfield companies found a way to give back to those who put their lives on the line every day. 

The Executive Director for Memorial Medical Centers Foundation, Melissa Hansen-Schmadeke, said a meaningful message directed at the Springfield community's health care workers took the community by storm.

"You can drive down any subdivision and see [the signs] in many yards," Schmadeke said. "Many cars are displaying the 'Hearts for Heath Care Workers' decals in their cars and of course the T-shirts. You can see those about anywhere walking down the streets of Springfield."

"Hearts for Healthcare Workers" - it's a simple, but powerful, message.

"This really started as a simple pink heart," Schmadeke said. "It was originally on a sheet of paper and people were printing it out and putting it in their windows."

Months later, that message expanded to so much more than just paper in people's windows. Ace Sign Company and Primo Designs joined together to support front line workers in their community.

Manager of Primo Designs, Jay Capriotti, said he wanted to give back to those who were at the forefront of the pandemic.

"When many people were nervous and scared to go out in the community, the health care workers were front and center," Capriotti said.

Todd Bringuet of Ace Sign Company said the company created and sold the signs for about $9 each and thousands of them were distributed throughout the community.

"There were over 6,000 signs produced and distributed," Bringuet said.

According to Capriotti, Primo Designs created and sold more than 1,000 T-shirts.

"Going out there to see something you produced and see how well it took off, it really made me feel special," Capriotti said. "It really made me and our company feel like we were able to do something to help."

On Friday, money collected from the sales was given to both Memorial Medical Center and the HSHS. St. John's Foundation.

"We had about $15,000 raised from the signs that were sold, and Ace Sign Company decided to add another $5,000 to that," Bringuet said.

All together, the two companies donated $24,000.

Schmadeke said it means the world to have so much support from the community.

"We are thrilled and humbled by the support we have received from our communities throughout the global pandemic," Schmadeke said.

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