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Thursday, May 24, 2012 07:00 pm


Ronald Earley has invented a new type of cane and would like to see it manufactured in Springfield.  

Except there’s one problem. Everyone he’s talked to, which includes U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., seems to think his idea is too simple.     

“They tell me it’s a clever idea, but it’s so simple that they (major manufacturers) may not want to manufacture it,” Earley said.

Earley, a 75-year-old inventor and entrepreneur, has recently unveiled the Cane Plus, which combines the Cradle Cane Handle and a Grip ’n Rise knob onto an aluminum adjustable cane. The Cradle Cane Handle is a snake-like handle that provides a cushioned hand support on top and an end piece that will rest across the end of a hand. The Grip ’n Rise knob allows an individual to grasp the middle of the knob and then press themselves up, without worry of their hand sliding or the cane slipping.

Earley, a Springfield resident, says he has sold about 500 canes, which come in seven different styles.

Earley says instead of allowing multiple manufacturers to create a different piece of the Cane Plus, which he believes could lead to production being sent overseas, he would like to see a factory in Springfield build all the pieces of the cane.

“The issue I’m currently having is, I can’t get anyone to build the whole cane. They’ll bring the eggs, but they won’t make the whole cake,” Earley said. 
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