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Posted on March 30, 2020 at 11:12 AM by Melinda Mayo
“Rejoicing in hope, patience in tribulation, and continuing steadfastly in prayer.”
The Holy Bible, New International Version, Romans 12:12
“If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster and treat those two impostors just the same;”
If— by Rudyard Kipling
A series of sad milestones was reached this weekend. The first was 100 (now at least 112) Virginians requiring hospitalization for COVID-related Illness. The second was the first confirmed case of a resident in the City of Roanoke and, most unfortunate of all, the first COVID-related death in our region. Each of these, of course, are set within the larger context of more than 700,000 cases worldwide and nearly 2,500 deaths here in the United States.
A Pause to Remember
We should pause for a moment and say a prayer or offer a thought, or just remain silent for a few moments to honor the 80-year-old woman who became the first in our area to succumb to the novel coronavirus. We should also use this milestone as a reminder that what we are dealing with is serious, deadly serious. Though the first, she certainly will not be the last in spite of the efforts of Fire-EMS personnel, nurses, and doctors. We can still lessen the numbers of individuals and families that will confront this tragedy. Stay home if you are able. If you must go out, avoid gathering in groups and maintain at least six feet of separation. This is true if you are at a pharmacy, at a grocery store, or even outside at a park or on a trail. These actions will save lives!
We likely have many weeks if not months of struggle ahead, both health-related and economic. Much will have changed by then, but much will remain the same. Your family will still mean the world to you, perhaps even a bit more so now. Your neighborhood will perhaps be a bit more familiar to you than before, you might even know a few more folks by name. Those neighborhood restaurants, stores, and venues will be more important than ever, and it is unlikely we will ever see servers at restaurants, store clerks, or small business owners the way we did before all of this. They are more important than perhaps many had previously realized. Roanoke will still be a wonderful community full of wonderful people, set in some of the greatest beauty to be found anywhere in our Country. Just look at spring bursting all around us!
We need to pause and mourn those we have lost. We need to do all we can to avoid losing more. We must retain hope while we work through this. Most of us will be fine after all this passes, but it is unlikely any of us will be the same as we were before.
Stay strong, stay healthy, and stay hopeful.
— Bob Cowell
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