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Debra-Lynn B. Hook: Heroes, seen and unseen

Debra-Lynn B. Hook, Tribune News Service on

Published in Parenting News

Most days, I remember to say a prayer of hope and gratitude for my life and the lives of all my family members and friends, including the two sons who live with me, including a frightened sister who lives in COVID-19-ravaged New Orleans.

I feel grateful for the world's health-care workers, including my nurse friend Emily, who leaves her 10-year-old asthmatic son in the care of his grandparents so she can tend COVID patients without fear of endangering her son's life.

I remember to thank the people at the natural food co-op in town who bag and deliver groceries for me and my family twice a week, and all the people who grow, make, package, truck, stock, deliver and sort our food, household goods, medicines and mail.

I whisper a silent "thank you" when I see the clear-talking national infectious disease specialist Anthony Fauci, who has his own bobblehead now, and Ohio's state health officer Amy Acton, who has a Facebook fan page and a T shirt that says "Not all heroes wear capes."

I applaud the leaders who listen to them.

In this global pandemic, I think of the scientists in the labs who are working in earnest on vaccines, virus detection tests and antibody tests.


I hold up the companies manufacturing hospital masks and gloves, gowns and ventilators as fast as they can, including those shifting their mechanization to make medical products.

I bow to the responsible journalists reporting 24-7 on COVID-19 from around the world, including the happy stories, especially the happy stories, like the one about the 104-year-old World War II veteran from Oregon who fully recovered from the virus.

I consider the teachers who've had to learn on the fly about Zoom classroom instruction, including those who've gone above and beyond, recording themselves reading stories online to young children.

I acknowledge small-business owners like my friend Rosi who just opened a restaurant in January, who offered take-out as long as she could, partly so she could keep people on payroll.


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