MARTINSBURG, Pa. (WTAJ) — Parker Gregg lost his father to carbon monoxide poisoning in 2017 and he’s been on a mission ever since to make sure no other family has to go through what he has.

If you’ve seen the name “Parker Gregg” on WTAJ this year, it’s probably because of his abilities on the football field. The Central High School Senior helped lead the Dragons to a 14-1 season and the PIAA Class 3A Semifinals. He also is the first player in the state’s recorded history to rack up 1,000 yards rushing and receiving.

On the accomplishment, Parker said, “”It means a lot but I just want to thank my teammates and my coaches. for everything.” He continued, “they made the holes for me. All I needed to do was run.”

You could say on the field that he played like a man on a mission. Off the field, he was working on his mission to save lives.

Two months after his father’s passing, the idea came to him. Parker explained, “I think I was riding in the car with my mom. It just like hit me. Just thinking. Looking out the window and I just ran with it.” What if there were a device that could prevent something like this from happening?

He took his idea to his friend, Cayden Wright, while they were in the locker room getting ready for a basketball practice.

“I knew Cayden was very technologically sound,” Parker said.

Cayden explained, “I’ve been interested in technology for a number of years. It started with just using my parent’s computer to draw and type things and just finding out how these things work.”

Motivated by Parker’s mission, Cayden was able to use his tech savvy to create “Air Alert.” It’s a device that not only detects dangerous levels of carbon monoxide, but it’s also able to shut off whatever machine is producing it. For example: a car battery and it’s motor.

Cayden demonstrated, “If we turn up this sensor to 400 parts per million, you’ll hear an alarm sound. At this parts per million you’d start to get a headache from the carbon monoxide. But let’s say the level keeps increasing. You’ll notice the car shuts off. At this parts per million, you’d be two hours away form being unconscious.”

Cayden Wright demonstrates how “Air Alert” senses carbon monoxide and can shut off a car’s battery and motor.

The device took Parker and Cayden to the National TSA Competition in 2018 where they took home first place. Now, three years later, “Air Alert” is a U.S. Patented Invention.

Parker said, “I didn’t really know if it was ever going to happen. But when it came, I was excited.”

Now the next steps is too get the device licensed to manufacturers who make carbon monoxide producing equipment. That way “Air Alert” can help save lives and complete Parker’s mission. The CDC estimates that 430 people die each year because of accidental exposure to carbon monoxide.

You can only imagine what Parker’s dad might think of the boys’ accomplishments. Asked if he would be proud Parker said, “I’m sure he would. Yeah. I’m sure he would.”

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