Tattoo Charlie’s owner donates medical supplies to health care workers

Posted at 1:23 PM, Mar 30, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-30 20:50:46-04

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Lex 18) — The owner of a Lexington tattoo parlor is pitching in to help healthcare workers battling covid-19.

Tattoo Charlie’s of Lexington Owner Buddy Wheeler has actually made a habit of giving back.

Every November, Wheeler holds a fundraiser to help pediatric cancer patients and their families.

Now, Wheeler is helping healthcare workers facing another invisible enemy.

“It’s really important to support the community that supports us so well, Wheeler explained. "Just being selfish, just cashing in essentially is not the way I want to be perceived in my business."

Wheeler had a stash of gloves, masks and other medical supplies like many tattoo parlors do.

Last week he donated everything from his Lexington and Louisville locations to hospitals like Baptist Health Lexington.

“On our Facebook and Instagram pages dozens of employees - nurses, doctors and just support staff - have commented on our post thanking us for the supplies. It’s been really overwhelming,” said Wheeler.

Wheeler is trying to stay positive, though his shops have been closed since March 18.

“Think about closing down for an undetermined amount of time was scary, frustrating and I worried a lot about my artists and my piercers,” said Wheeler.

Wheeler says while it’s tough, he understands why his business needs to stay closed to keep people safe.

In the meantime, he says he will continue to do his part, and he encourages others to do the same.

“As bad as this virus has been already, it really is happening where things are running out quickly. So I’d absolutely encourage other studio owners and other tattoo artists if you have extra supplies just sitting there, please donate them,” said Wheeler.

Wheeler‘s social media posts about his donations have gotten a lot of attention. Tattoo Charlie’s was even featured in a CNN article on Friday about supply donations. To read it click here.