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Special thanks to the many Towson-area helpers

Jake Berger, behind post, Alexandra Exelby and Millie Berger are excited to catch a glimpse of their beloved West Towson Elementary teachers, who did a drive-by visit through student neighborhoods on March 22.
Jake Berger, behind post, Alexandra Exelby and Millie Berger are excited to catch a glimpse of their beloved West Towson Elementary teachers, who did a drive-by visit through student neighborhoods on March 22.(John Patterson)

Life as we know it sure did change dramatically in recent weeks. I’m thankful for this great community we live in, even if we don’t get to be out in it very often these days.

How have you been coping with Covid-19 closings and quarantine? Some Towson neighbors have been inspiring ways to keep up cheer. In Idlewylde, for example, Christi Hess shared an idea on the neighborhood Facebook page organizing a “Shamrock Hunt” on St. Patrick’s Day.

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Residents hung shamrocks in their windows so walkers could stroll around and count how many they spot. The success of that event led to other versions, including a stuffed “Bear Hunt,” and an “Art Show” where people could showcase their creativity to passers-by.

Anneslie, Wiltondale and other neighborhoods have hosted similar adventures. On April 1, some neighbors decided to “Unite with Light,” placing candles outside their homes as a visible sign of support for medical professionals. People are finding creative ways to feel connected to one another during social distancing.

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District 42A Del. Cathi Forbes shared an adorable Facebook post about West Towson Elementary School faculty members who organized a drive-by caravan through students’ neighborhoods on March 22.

Westies held up signs of appreciation as the teachers honked and waved and blew kisses to let students know how much they’re missed. Watching the parade pass by “was two minutes and 48 seconds of pure joy,” said Forbes.

Thank you to the educators who are making it possible for students to continue learning at home, and to the folks who’ve been making meals available to feed vulnerable students during the school closures.

Student Support Network also has been able to offer grocery gift cards to local student families in need.

Are you one of the essential employees that can’t stay home because everyone relies on you to help make it through this challenging time? From the bottom of my heart, thank you for your sacrifices.

Our grocery store employees have been under so much pressure with all the panic shoppers, and they’ve worked so hard to keep facilities as sanitized and as stocked as possible.

Thank you, too, to the delivery drivers, carryouts and gas stations around Towson. To the skilled tradespeople. To the police, firefighters and paramedics. And a giant thank-you to the health care professionals on the front lines of this pandemic.

On a personal note, I’d like to give a very special shout-out to the University of Maryland St. Joseph Medical Center. My dad had a heart attack on March 23, and that frightening event was even scarier in the midst of this global health crisis.

Heartfelt thanks to Stewart Finney, Denise Donovan and a whole crew of nurses, techs, physical and occupational therapists, case workers and everyone else who helped my dad and continue to help others during this difficult time.

Sometimes, in the worst of situations, you are able to see the best of people. And for that light of hope, I am truly thankful. Take care, everyone — and wash your hands!

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