“Happy Birthday” Cameron “22”

Happy Birthday Cameron. This morning early, around 6:30 am, my phone rang. As usual it was Cameron calling as he worked. He generally calls me 2 to 3 times a week at this time. Finally he said, I’ve been waiting for you to tell me something…..OMG….I realized…IT WAS HIS BIRTHDAY…That year went fast. Its hard to believe he is 22. I can still hear his mom screaming down the hall when she was in labor. lol. It wasn’t funny then, but it is now.

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This is one of my Favorite Pictures

He was such a little guy, but has grown to be as tall or taller as grandpa and probably heavier than him. This year has been an awful year for the country, but for Cameron, it has been good. He has had several jobs but has finally landed a job that he likes and is getting a great pay check. He works for “Humpty Dump”. Rather a catchy name isn’t it. I call it Humpty Dumpty

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Delivering a container to Tina’s house.

They are a container rental company. He loves it. He delivers, picks up and dumps at the landfills or transfer stations. When the container business is slow he can help out in the boat store which is also part of their business. The business is in Hennepin which is along the Illinois River. They sell and deliver grocerys to the barges as they travel the river. He is making good money and is finally paying his bills. lol. YaHoo!!!!

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Last fall Cameron bought a new car. It is a Kia Optima. Pretty nice car with all the bells and whistles. Today he came out of work and found Birthday messages all over the glass. Pretty funny…………

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Tina and the kids had did it. lol. Tammy came over to Tina and Ed’s after work and they had cake and Ice Cream.

Cameron worked for a local farmer/trucker last fall. He delivered water to pools or any place that needed a tanker full of water. He also got some great experience with the low boy, delivering heavy equipment.

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He’s sitting in the dozer here, but you can barely see him.

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During the holiday, Cameron drove down to Harlingen in his car with Tammy, Cassidy and Carly.

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Fishing on South Padre Island

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We took a boat trip on the Rio Grande River in Mission at the Riverside. It was a 2 hour trip on a beautiful day.

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Afterwards, we ate at the restaurant. Tammy and Grandpa ordered this big Margarita. Mom had to show the kids how to drink……lol….But Grandpa helped too…

Cameron drove back down in February thinking he might find a good job and go to Welding school. He decided after a few days that wasn’t going to happen. The pay scale here is so low, and he couldn’t afford Welding school at this time. So Cameron stayed for 3 weeks and helped Grandpa build my She-Shed.

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They worked faithfully during those 3 weeks. Cameron did a lot of the roof work. Grandpa’s getting older ya know…..lol…. Thank goodness you were here Cameron. It would have never been built that fast. Thank You for keeping Grandpa motivated.

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It turned out so cute….

When Cameron went back to Illinois, he got another job, driving a really big rig over the road.

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This truck had the big walk in sleeper. He learned many things with this job. Electronic logging, the function of the Qualcomm, and many other things about trucking and driving the big rig. But you might know it…………….Corona Virus was on the way. Loads slowed way way down. Some business’s closed. Can’t make money that way. So now he has a great job with “Humpty Dump”. With the Shelter at Home happening, many people have been cleaning out their houses and garages. Lots of remodeling. Yes he has been very busy delivering and emptying dumpsters. He drives all over the area, and is home at night. He loves that part. So what a year it has been.

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Cameron, Elvis, and his friend Andrew

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He is now 22, and can walk in a bar anytime and drink with the guys….lol…Yes Cameron, you are becoming a responsible ADULT…..So Proud….Life can be a struggle, but you keep plugging away. Your on your way now……Live Life to the Fullest….A Step at a Time….

……A few more Favorite Pictures…..

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Scott’s Wedding

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Tammy’s Graduation from St. Francis School of Nursing with her BSN

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Cameron’s best friend Larry, in Depue. He passed away with an asthma attack. Cameron has never forgotten Larry’s death.

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This was a High School Dance with his friend Maddie….He loved that hat….

Carly is Finally Home With Her Momma

Tammy has been home for several weeks now and has finished quarantine.  She did a Covid test and came out Negative…..Hallelujah….Life is beginning to return to normal….Well, Sort of….Carly was able to finally come home from Tina’s. Tina has been so good for Carly, and has taken such good care of her.  But she was now so excited to finally be Home with her mom. While Tammy was still in New York City, my niece sent me a pattern for crocheted Momma and Baby bear, dressed in nurses scrubs with face masks on.  So so cute.  I knew immediately who to ask to make them.

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Pam is a winter resident in Eastgate.  Yes, she was happy to crochete them.  Pam summers at Mendota Hills Campground not far from us at home.  Tammy and Pam both returned to Illinois the same days and completed their quarantine the same day.   Pam finished them after they arrived in Mendota Hills.  They all met at Hobby Lobby in Peru.

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See her face scars….Tammy bought her a New Bike…..Whoops she crashed..

Carly fell in love with them.  Pam said while Tammy and her talked, Carly put them in the seat belts for the trip home.  “Thank You Pam for making them, and Thank You Diane for sending me the patterns”.   For Mothers Day, Carly made her a Card.  She is so creative and artistic.

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Now Tammy has learned to be a home school teacher.  Since the Shelter in Home has happened all the schools have shut down.  Putnam Co has been holding classes on the internet.  Zoom is a program that has become extraordinarily popular across the USA for schools, entertainment industry and businesses.  The schools use it to hold classes as a unit.  At least they can see each other and communicate with the teacher and their friends.  Carly had a science project about Landforms.  She really took it to extreme to create her project.  She has such an imagination.  She was to create her Dream Island using different types of Landforms.

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To construct her Dream Island she took clay, molded it, and painted it inside a large Tupperware container.  She has an extensive amount of little animals and characters from her Fairy Gardens.

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You can see she includes a forest, the sea, a waterfall, cave and Palm trees.  She included a firepit, a boat on the ocean and all her little animals.   This is her Dream Island.  So Creative.  I think she deserves an A+ Tammy bought her an Art Easel.

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She wants to watch Bob Ross on TV now.  Who knows, maybe she is our next Budding Artist. wp-15902523113293984787536407489040.jpg

I asked Tammy about that face, as she looks mad…..Carly said, “That’s my Painting Face”….lol…Ok.  So this is the result.

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I don’t know where she got this at, but I rather like the stars.  So now school is over for 2019-2020.  The teachers had to clean out all the desks and lockers and give everything to the kids with their Certificate.  The kids couldn’t go inside, so the teachers met them all at curbside.

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Miley’s teacher met her at the window of the car.   Her certificate earned her an Award for “AGREEABLE ATTITUDE”  I bet theirs a story behind that.  lol.  This fall she will be in 6th grade.  Junior High is Swaney which is in the country south of McNabb.  Amazing she is in Junior High.  Doesn’t seem possible.  All our kids past through the halls of Swaney.  Now here comes the Grandkids…..Really has it been that long???

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Now we have Austin.  He will be going in the 4th grade in Hennepin.  His Award was for “GOOD CHARACTER”.….Really,  …lol…  Just look at that face….I think he is a duplicate for “DENNIS the MENACE”… Mostly the kids have adapted well this year to the sudden change.  The ones that really have been impacted is the Graduating Classes of 2020.  They have lost out on so much of their Senior Year activities.  Sports programs and Championships, Special Events like, Sweetheart dance and Prom.  So many of the things that make the Senior year so special.  They haven’t even had a Graduation Ceremony.  So many of the towns and schools have come up with great ideas.  Many have had drive by Ceremonies.  All cars line up.  As you drive up, the student exits their car in the cap and gown and walks to the area where they give out the diplomas.  Then the student returns to their car and drives away.  Such a shame, but its the best they can do.  Some towns are making Banners and Billboards and displaying their pictures.  Some schools even have the Superintendent going to each students house for a personal Congrats……These kids are in a special group that will forever remember their Graduation of 2020 amid a Covid-19 Pandemic.  They will have so much to talk about some day.

Even the Fire Departments have been so supportive of the kids.  All the Depts in Putnam Co have been doing Drive by Birthday Parades.   Imagine being a kid who can’t go to school, play with their friends, not even go to the store and visiting family and friends.  Then your Birthday comes and your told, …..No Party, No Friends, No outside Family…..That has to be like the end of the world.  The Fire Departments have been doing Parade drive by’s, flashing their lights, blowing their sirens, and wishing a Personal Happy Birthday over the PA.

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This is the post on the Granville Fire Dept. Page on FB the other day.

Granville Fire Department
May 21 at 9:27 PM ·
The Granville Fire Department has provided well over 70 birthday parades the last couple of months. We would like to thank all of our members and the community members that requested visits for children and adults alike. The youngest was 2 and the eldest was celebrating her 93rd birthday.
All things must come to an end though. We have decided to stop doing parades as of June 1st, 2020. People may now safely social distance themselves and have their own small birthday gatherings with families. We have had fun seeing the excitement of so many residents of this great town. Thanks for thinking of us and letting us be apart of your day making memories to last a lifetime!
Thank you for all of your support, now and all year long

What a wonderful thing the Fire Depts have done for the kids.  It will be amazing to see in years to come as they recite their memories of childhood.

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On March 27th the doors on many Fire Departments raised in unison, displaying all their trucks with their lights flashing brightly.  It is an awesome sight.  All the Depts in Putnam Co displayed their videos on FB.  This was done to show Support for all Fire, EMS, Police, Hospital Staff and all the other workers who is out their trying keep America going and safe as possible during this World Wide Covid-19 Pandemic.  So many are putting their life on the lines.

Things are starting to open up now.  Theirs still so many cases of Coronavirus throughout the US and the world.  Our economy is in such danger.  Employment is so high.  As of today the US has 1,613,443 confirmed cases with 96,662 deaths.  As a nation the count is coming down, although their is still some hot spots.  Illinois is 3rd in the nation because mostly because of Cook County and surrounding county’s.   Illinois has 105,444 confirmed cases with 4,715 deaths.  Texas is 8th in the nation, but will soon pass Michigan and come in at 7th.  Texas has 53,584 confirmed with 1,470 deaths.  New York is still the top……359,926 confirmed with 28,926 deaths.  Now that we are starting to open up, the worry is that it will start an upward trend again.  Such a fine balance the government and medical teams need to do.  We can’t stay home forever, but we don’t want to inundate the hospitals the way it happened in NYC.  We must be prepared with all the medical supplies and PPE to treat the patients and also to protect all the medical staff.  In Cameron County where we live, the restaurants have opened to 50 percent.  Walmart and Lowes don’t seem to care how many are in the store even though they do have a percentage.  Beauty and Barber shops are open, also this weekend churches and bars.  All with Social Distancing.  The masks are no longer mandatory but recommended.  Many of the stores have signs on their door requiring a mask.  I hate to wear mine.  It is so hot.  I do my best, but take it off many times when no one is near.  At the Island, they are expecting 50,000 people this weekend.  Ohhh My…..This could be Not Good.  Social Distancing on the Beach…..hopefully they all Comply…wp-15902523337156123028847534338719.jpg But I do believe it is so important to try to wear them near people.  This picture says it all.  We must protect our neighbor, and respect their rights when we are near them.

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This is “The New Normal”

Tammy bought new masks for her family….Of course….She loves her JeepCassidy looks pretty no matter what she has on…..She has recently started her first job…..”McDonalds”…Yea for her….We plan on still heading to Illinois this summer as long as everything keeps improving.  Here at the park, life is almost normal again.  The halls have opened up and above all…..The Swimming Pool and Spa’s are Open…..People were so missing them.  Illinois is taking small steps.  Sounds like Campgrounds might be opening and also Bars with outside dinning areas.  That will be good for Scott and Brandy.  Tammy has went back to her OSF job in Peoria, 1 day a week. She will be starting a new job soon in Peru at IVCH as a Nurse in ICU.   It will be close to home.  I think she is done with the Traveling Nurse for awhile.  She want to be a little more grounded now. wp-15902523447017926855023072972365.jpg

Last week was Nurses week, so this is my Thank You to You Tammy, and all the Nurses out their.  Your work is so needed.  It is so hard on all of you I’m sure.  The things you see, and the things you have to do, has to be emotionally so hard.   You have to make snap educated decisions.  Whether you are on the front lines or in our everyday unit, you see some horrendous sights.  Many of us could never do what you all do.  You must have a calling…..a Compassion Like No Other….

“Thank Goodness for People Like You”

IMAGINE!!!….The Life of Your Grandparents

When I was a little girl, I lived with my grandmother for 2 years. I was 10, when I moved in with her. I have so many wonderful memories of those years. I remember laying in her bed in the mornings while she was combing her long hair and putting it in a bun. She would tell me so many stories of her life. Mostly happy stories. She was born in 1892, the 2nd of at least 10 children, married in 1918 or 1919, and my mom was born in 1920, an only child. They weren’t poor in their eyes, but they lived very frugally and worked hard to make ends meet. She would tell me many stories of her brothers and sisters and her mom and dad. She would talk about all the family get togethers, family reunions, weddings, and birth of children, cooking, planting gardens and harvesting the vegetables and fruits. Some times she would mention the depression in the 30’s, or even World War 1 (my grandpa fought in it), and World War 2, but she never dwelled on those things just the happy times. As a child everyone seemed so happy.

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I lived with my Grandma Meta in 4th and 5th grade

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Me and my Grandma around 1952

Now we look back and see how far progress has come in a century. Could we ever live like they did back then?. Life as they knew it was so difficult compared to our lives of today. I know myself I could never live without AC anymore. I couldn’t live without electricity or my car. They really worked very hard to maintain their daily lives. Now we have this New Coronavirus Pandemic that has shut down the world. I had never even heard of the Spanish Flu epidemic. It happened in 1918, and had 3 phases lasting till 1920 with no Vaccine. That is a little over 100 years. In hearing about this it has really made me think about all the hardships and important events that our parents and grandparents have experience in their life times. How many people have perished through disease, battle, even murder. All the heartache they experience, but life went on………. Then the other day, I seen this article that Tammy had posted on FACEBOOK from someone. It is such an eye opener.

For a small amount of perspective at this moment, imagine you were born in 1900. When you are 14, World War I starts and ends on your 18th birthday with 22 million people killed. Later in the year, a Spanish Flu epidemic hits the planet and runs until you are 20. Fifty million people die from it in those two years. Yes, 50 million.

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When you’re 29, the Great Depression begins. Unemployment hits 25%, global GDP drops 27%. That runs until you are 33. The country nearly collapses along with the world economy. When you turn 39, World War II starts. You aren’t even over the hill yet.

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When you’re 41, the United States is fully pulled into WWII. Between your 39th and 45th birthday, 75 million people perish in the war and the Holocaust kills six million. At 52, the Korean War starts, and five million perish.

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Approaching your 62nd birthday you have the Cuban Missile Crisis, a tipping point in the Cold War. Life on our planet, as we know it, could well have ended. Great leaders prevented that from happening.

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At 64 the Vietnam War begins, and it doesn’t end for many years. Four million people die in that conflict.

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As you turn 75, the Vietnam War finally ends. Think of everyone on the planet born in 1900. How do you survive all of that? A kid in 1985 didn’t think their 85-year-old grandparent understood how hard school was. Yet those grandparents (and now great grandparents) survived through everything listed above.

Perspective is an amazing art. Let’s try and keep things in perspective. Let’s be smart, help each other out, and we will get through all of this. In the history of the world, there has never been a storm that lasted. This too shall pass!

– Author Unknown

Amazing isn’t it…..In 120 years look what has happened. 2020….We are all still here….Great words….This Too Shall Pass….So now here we are, in the middle of a Pandemic for a new virus….”Coronavirus”….”Covid 19″….The whole world has been shut down. So many people have died. Now the unemployment rate is very high, parents can’t feed their children or pay their bills. Their cars lined up for mile in Food Giveaway Lines. We have just went through “Shelter in Place” just like the Spanish Flu in 1918, we have to wear face masks, just like they did then, also Social Distancing. Politics is in an uproar. You don’t talk with neighbors or family cause you just never know which side they are on. Now we have protesters because they think their lives are being controlled by the government. So many similarities to the past…We need to figure out how to get along with our neighbor…………REMEMBER!!!…THIS TOO SHALL PASS…

So again, I seen another article that Tammy had posted from FACEBOOK….This says it all. We all have different ideas on what is right. We need to be able to think with care and compassion, what is right for ourselves is not always the right for our neighbor.

“I am seeing so much anxiety about resuming business, and so much anger about continued regulations. People are feeling the need to catapult to one side or the other, then fight the opposition.

Here’s my perspective, from a mainstream medical model. I think a lot of folks have fallen into the idea that social distancing was meant to stop the viral spread. It wasn’t-it was meant to SLOW it while we put medical infrastructure in place. It has worked. We have, in most parts, not been overwhelmed like we likely would have been without protective measures. In the meantime, our testing procedures have gotten better. We’ve increased our ventilator count. We’ve gotten a little better handle on PPE supply chains, and many have helped by making masks and gowns. It’s not perfect, but it’s much better than it was seven weeks ago.

A vaccine is a long way off and not everyone will choose to get it. That is their choice. At some point, people have to be systematically exposed to begin the building of (hopeful) herd immunity. We will likely begin to experience a real increase in cases after reopening. Ideally, that exposure is controlled and calculated, in phases, to allow our medical community to respond adequately, and reduce the number of severe or fatal cases. That’s where we are.

Whether you feel like opening is too soon, or not soon enough, we were never going to social distance this thing into nonexistence. You now need to proceed as your health, wallet, and conscience allow.

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If you are medically vulnerable, you do not need to be a part of what is about to happen. Stay home if you can. If you’re not, or if your financial vulnerability trumps your health concerns, you need to proceed in ways that continue to protect yourself, and the elderly and medically vulnerable around you.
All of us need to calm down. Quit telling people who are financially struggling that they don’t care about human lives. Quit telling people who are truly at risk of dying from this virus that they are cowering in fear. Remember that until you’ve walked in someone else’s shoes, you should probably be careful in your judgements and subsequent harsh words.
We don’t HAVE to choose an either/or proposition and fight. We could choose other ways to be. Examples include but are not limited to:
“I think this may be too soon, so I will continue to shelter myself, and pray/make masks/ check on those who can’t.”
“I really need to go back to work, so I will do so, but I will be careful and try to protect myself, my family, and those around me with healthy strategies.”
See how those positions allow each of us to do what we need to, and also respect those who are choosing differently?
One thing that allows us to do this is humility. I can acknowledge that I am not an epidemiologist/economist/whatever, that I am making decisions based on my understanding of complex subjects and my own personal health and financial situation, that I am not all knowing, always right, and an expert in all fields, and that each person around me is doing their best too. We can make different choices and still be a supportive community. We can learn and evolve in our understanding of these issues.

Give one another the benefit of the doubt and the compassion of compromise.

Much love and prayers for everyone in making their own personal decision.”

-Author Unknown

These are both GREAT ARTICLES..…Both are from an Unknown Author. But this is how it should be. No fighting about your beliefs. Remember everyone has a different life style and needs. Be compassionate and make the decisions that is right for you and your family. Be understanding…..Our Great Grandparents, Grandparents and Parents made it….

….REMEMBER…..Be Kind to One Another….

….This Too Soon Shall Pass….

Hart Island…. NYC Potters Field….Coronavirus

March 14, 2020 was the first recorded death in the Coronavirus Pandemic in New York. Since then, which is less than 2 months, they have recorded over 20,000 deaths. The daily death count had spiked in early April to over 800 a day. Now it has lowered to an average of 260 a day. In 2017 the average deaths in NYC were 149. Daily hospitalizations went from 3,181 in April down to around 600 a day, much better but still too many. So many people flooding the hospitals. So many people dying. Where Do they put them all. The funerals homes were called. They were at capacity. They rented reefer trailers to keep the bodies in. Fema deployed 85 reefer trailers to the city. Many hospitals had reefer units in their parking lots. An embalmed body will last at least 2 weeks without decomposing. A refrigerated body, a couple of months. But generally in the normal world, that never happens. A body is usually buried or cremated with in 3 days. But now family’s were becoming desperate. They only had a 2 week window to take care of their family member. How could they take care of the overload…..The Crematoriums were overloaded also. Their are only 4 in the City, 2 in Queens, 1 in The Bronx, and 1 in Brooklyn. They can only process 20 a day. The government gave them permission to process the bodies 24 hours of the day, but still that doesn’t even begin to take care of them all.

The other problem was many of the dead were not claimed. Because of the virus, once you entered the hospital, nobody was allowed to visit. Many died alone without the family or had no idea their loved one died. Many HAD NO family. The families had 2 weeks to claim the bodies before something had to be done. So what was the answer….

…….HART ISLAND…….Potters Field Cemetery …..

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Hart Island is about 1 mile long by .33 wide. It is located on the western edge of Long Island Sound, and north east of The Bronx. New York City actually contains 36-42 islands. We know some of them, Manhattan Island, Staten Island, and Long Island are the big ones. The others we know are Coney Island, Ellis Island, Rikers Island. Of course we all know Rikers, from Law and Order….It is the home of NYC’s Jail Complex. Hart Island is the burial grounds for over one million people. These are people not claimed by their relatives and the poor and homeless. Some people choose to be buried their because of the cost. Also the people who died of diseases that needed a mass burial site. Many children and stillborn are buried their, as well as dismembered body parts.

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In 1864, the first public use for the island was the training ground for the US Colored Troops. Since then it was used for many things. Union Civil War Prison Camp, Jail, Homeless shelter, Boys Reformatory, Drug Rehabilitation Center, Psychiatric Institution, Tuberculosis’s Sanatorium, and a Potters Field for mass burials. The buildings were abandoned in 1977 and then became the city’s Potters field, run by the NYC Dept. of Corrections. In the fall of 2019 it was transferred to NYC Dept of Parks and Recreation. The Island is isolated from the rest of the city, with no electricity and is only accessible by Ferry Boat from City Island. Burials are performed by the Inmates of Rikers.

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As many of us seen on TV, Hart Island became the temporary burial place of the Coronavirus Pandemic, when the Funeral Homes capacity was overwhelmed and body’s were unclaimed. These burials began in late March of 2020. In April the DOC inmates were replaced with hired private contractors to do the mass burials. The trenches were dug, and burials began as drones hovered over and took pictures. Adults are placed in pine boxes according to size and are stacked in sections of 150, measuring three coffins deep in two rows. Theirs seven sizes of coffins ranging from 1-7 feet long. Each box is labeled with and ID number, the persons age, ethnicity, and the place where the body was found or picked up. The numbers of burials increased from 25 a week to 120. They increased the burials from one day to five days a week.

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The city is hoping that after the Pandemic calms down that families will want to claim their relative. They can be disinterred with the city picking up the costs. The reburial will be the cost for the family to pay. Their is lots of paperwork to file, then the Funeral Home has to come to pick up the body for the new burial. So their fore many will probably leave their loved one on Hart Island because of the cost.

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Hart Island is a seven minute Ferry ride from City Island. It was closed off to the public till 2012. Now families or individuals can request permission to come and visit a grave. You may be escorted to the white painted concrete markers at each plot, or at a gazebo looking out at the field. They say it may all change next year (2021) when the City Parks take’s over management from the Dept of Corrections.

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The Island is a very Peaceful place. The buildings are crumbling from the past. Some are torn down as they need more burial ground. It is full of wildlife and is a bird sanctuary. Maybe when the Parks Dept takes over they will make it a peaceful, beautiful island to visit and feel the spirt of the million people who are buried underneath. It is a very spiritual place. We need to remember these people all had a place in life at one time. They were children, with moms and dads, they all grew up to have a space in life…..A purpose to live…..Many were productive citizens…..And then they passed…..and were forgotten in a Mass Burial on Hart Island…..

Their is so much to read about this island. Its past, the people who are buried. A few had been famous in their younger years and became penniless. The different chapters of this island when the buildings were in use. It is worth the time to search out the history of Hart Island, as well as many of the other 42 islands located in NYC.

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The City Of New York…..Potters Field

Blessed are the poor in spirit……For theirs is the kingdom of Heaven

My Child.….Peace I leave to you….My peace I give to you

The Almighty….Has his own purposes

He must have loved them…He made so many of them

Cry not for us….For we are with the father

No longer do we cast shadows on the ground as you do

We are at peace

Brittney is Home…NYC…Krucial Staffing….Coronavirus

Brittney has finished her last week and left the city yesterday. She is in good spirits and has returned to Peoria Illinois. Now she will be in her first week of quarantine, Tammy is starting her second, and Carrie should be finishing her last. They are all safe and sound.

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Britt in the very back next to the guy with black glasses

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Brittney on the right…

Brittney had the fortune to be in the same unit every day and a team spirit was formed. I believe that is so important in anything we do. Its a team effort. Patient counts are now slowing down but plenty still their. The other 4 Nurses from Peoria OSF are probably in their 2nd week although Tammy hasn’t talked with them since they spent their day together. These girls have given so much of themselves along with all the medical personnel that came from all over the country. NYC has certainly welcomed them and been so good to them.

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Marriot Marquis….The hotel for Tammy and Brittney

Their appreciation has been shown all over the city. The city marquis were full of messages of appreciation.

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The NYFD and NYPD continually showed their appreciation.

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The Navy Blue Angels and Airforce Thunderbirds on April 28 2020, flying over Manhattan and the Empire State Building. They flew over New Jersey, New York City and Long Island in a salute to Healthcare workers during the COVID-19 crisis.

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The Lincoln Hospital where Tammy and Brittney were is still full of Krucial Staffing Nurses. Many of them have finished their contracts, and many of them have resigned for more time. From what I was reading, it I believe they will have new work schedules that will be more beneficial for the Medical staff. They will have days off every week. It will be more like a real job. According to Tammy’s team leader, Krucial Agency holds 90 Percent of the contracted nurses at Lincoln Hospital. Their are other agency’s but they are the biggest. They will be their quite awhile yet. They expect cases to pick up when the city starts to reopen. So many of the regular staff has caught the virus. They have gotten sick, some died, some quite their jobs due to stress and exhaustion. The healthcare system will need to bring in and train many new nurses.

In researching the hospitals of New York City, I found their are 62 Acute Care Hospitals. They are located in the 5 boroughs, ….The Bronx, Brooklyn, Manhatten, Queens, and Staten Island. I found these charts..…The Orange are locations being prepared for a surge in Patients…..Blue are Hospitals….The USNS Comfort Navy Hospital ship ended up only treating 182 patients. It was docked for 31 days in the harbor. The Javit’s Center closed friday after treating almost 1,100 patients. It opened in late March, operated by the US Army.

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When you look at Lincoln Hospital, the figures are overwhelming. They are a 362 bed hospital, but 525 more beds were added. How on earth could the staff take care of patients when they more than doubled in size. Tammy did say they were everywhere. Even in the halls. I believe she said Occ Health had been crammed with 40 beds. The hospital had become total Covid Care.

Governor Cuomo, had requested the US Army Corps of Engineers build at least 4 field hospitals, which included Javits Center…..The other 3 will remain in place in case there’s a second wave of Covid-19. New York City has taken such a hit. It has brought the city to its knees. How can people be protesting about their rights and freedoms. They want to take their kids out to the store. They don’t want to wear the masks. Look at all these sick and dying people. New York City was caught off guard. I know that the economy is destroyed and people are out of work, but what is more important….Life and family…or…Money… Their has to be a medium to where we can return to our life style. But it will never be the same. Not until a Vaccine is found…..or if..

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Krucial Staffing took on a Huge task. They are from the Kansas City area. They are a Specialty Disaster Staffing Agency that FEMA uses for Hurricanes and Tornadoes. They never expected a Pandemic. They received a call from the office of the Mayor of NYC in March. Their Emergency Center Quadrupled in 10 days across 5 different buildings. They had to quickly set up Logistical Teams, Incident Management Teams. In NYC they had to set up Hotels, with a team in each hotel for incoming nurses. They did all the paperwork, assignments, etc. for each incoming medical hire. Each hospital communicated their needs to get their personnel. They needed buses for transportation to each hospital with a team lead on board for each hospital. Back at the office Krucial had to send out the call for nurses. The switchboard had to answer thousands of calls and hire on the spot after collecting all the legal info. During this time, any state license was accepted. No one needed an actual NY license. Last I knew their was over 4,000 nurses hired for the 21 day contract. They were hired in waves of 500 to 1000. By the end of March the help began to arrive. They were housed in many of the hotels across the city. It was a huge undertaking. They also called up medical people for New Orleans. So KUDO’S to Krucial Staffing Agency. I know it didn’t go off without problems, but considering the time element and the needs of NEW YORK CITY, they did amazing.

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So for now, we still do our best to co-operate with the authorities. Cameron County is still climbing slowly. Yesterday we had 11 more raising our count to 432 cases and 18 deaths. Our Shelter in Place ruling as well as face masks have expired on April 30. It is recommended to still use them. Retail business’s and restaurants are now opening with only 25 percent of capacity allowed. Beaches are also opened but we must still use Social Distancing. So are we opening to soon????…..Time will tell. The governor will evaluate in 2 weeks. In Illinois, they still have Shelter in Place and face masks. Cook County is still climbing. Down state in our little Putnam County, it is still Coronavirus Free…..The best news is

Tammy Was Tested……She is Covid-19 FREE…….

But she still is Quarantined for 2 weeks……

Thank You to the Girls, and Thank You to all the Staff that answers the call. They have put their life on the line. They didn’t have to do this, but they go anyway. It is like going to war and fighting the front line. They leave their families and put their lives on hold, not knowing where or the circumstances they will work in. It has be exhausting, so mentally depressing, and so many other adjectives. They have witnessed and done things they never thought possible. Many things were done that were not Ethical, but they had no choice due to equipment shortages and PPE. They have now changed inside. I’m sure they will look at things differently now. They need this time to decompress…….

Tammy’s Home From New York ….. Coronavirus…..Thanks To All

Tammy came home over the weekend. She had signed up for another week, but it wasn’t meant to be. I won’t deny she had me worried, but she is fine. On her 20th day, she scheduled It off. She hoped that she would rest and recoup for the next week. When I talked with her that morning, I knew she was exhausted and so tired. I had noticed in the last week she was getting more quite. I was already uneasy. Late that afternoon, she text and said she was leaving. She had a car scheduled in an hour and she was driving home. I wanted her to fly, but it wasn’t going to happen. She want to get out now……She needed to drive, and have alone time….I was getting more worried. I really didn’t want her to leave that late from New York City, a city she had never driven in. But everyone who knows Tammy knows she loves to drive. I think that is where she gets her peace and alone time. She can drive straight through from Illinois to Harlingen Texas, (near Mexico Border) in 22 hours…..Crazy Driver…..I decided to text Katherine, her best friend at home. She is a Nurse at IVCH in Peru. If she would contact anyone else, it would be her. Yes, they had already been talking. As she left New York City, she called and I could tell she was already feeling better. The weight was lifting.….Katherine sent me texts all evening and night. Then I was up at 5 to make sure she got home…..What a Saturday it was….Yes, she pulled in Sunday by noon…..THANK YOU KATHERINE for helping me keep my sanity through the night…. here is her story in her words….

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Tammy Bergen
22 hrs ·

I am gonna start this off by saying today is day 22! And the 1st day in 21 days that I have woke up in my own bed! I have missed my family and my friends so much! I might even say that i have missed Illinois!
New York was a beast! I have seen thing and did things that i have never dreamed of. And I met so many so many great nurses, APN’s and Drs! They were from all across the United States! The staff was very welcoming as well. They would have lunch donated at times. My last day they had breakfast donated and brought in to us! And REAL coffee! 😍 lol
while I was there I worked on 9 different units. I worked a couple of units more than once but for the most part everyday was like starting a brand new job. Everything was always new. The staff, the nurses I worked with, what supplies were available, what type of patients there were. Every unit was like opening a door to the twilight zone. You never know what is gonna be there. And the attitude was strong and everywhere! That is the best way I can describe it. It was not easy for me to go on every day with 5-6 hours of sleep mixed with the constant change. I was never able to develop “a work rhythm”? I’m not sure if that’s the word I am looking for but… And As many of you know, I have struggled with depression my whole life. And I ended up finding myself in a very very low spot. Around day 15 I started to cry everyday and I think day 19 I almost cried all day! (Fyi it’s very hard to tell if someone is crying when they are wearing all this head gear!) It was sooo hard. Even though we were there to help and shine some light into the darkness that is going on in New York right now, I lost control of myself and the darkness crept inside me... On the 20th I had the day off. They allowed us to have 2 pto days in this 21 day contract. My plan was to destress as much as possible and trudge through work one more time… and then cancel my 1 week extension and go home! But by the end of day 20 all I could think about was getting out of this cold dark place that I had found myself in. So rented a car and got the hell outta there at 7pm! It was truly one of the best things that I have ever done for myself. As I began driving away from NYC I could truly feel the heaviness of it all leave my body… and I could smile! A real smile! I talked to my mom and my best friend Katherine almost all the way home. I even had Cassidy on the phone for an hour and an half! And we had a great conversation! I was excited to surprise Cameron at the house so I never told him I was coming! Lol And I thank god my family and my friends are here for me everyday! A part of me is very ashamed or dissatisfied in myself for leaving a day early. But not any more. I am so proud that I was able to help in such a terrible situation! I have learned many things about myself through this experience. I will never regret it! But I don’t think I want to go back to NYC... ever! Lol thank you to everyone that sent us stuff! You guys really really really helped me personally!! And we shared with many others as well! I will never forget this experience! Aunt Connie told me that I would not be able to come back from this the same person. At the time I didn’t think to much about it. But…. she is so very right... not always! But this time! Lol I am just so happy to be home!❤❤❤
ps. Britt Novak is still rockin it in NYC! You got this girl!

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Tammy is now home and doing well. Now she has 2 weeks of quarantine before she can return to work. I know she has missed the kids tremendously. She has come back a changed person in so many ways…..She has learned a lot about herself and will be stronger for it. She will never forget the patients, nurses, doctors, and all the experiences of New York….She has accomplished something not many of us could or would ever undertake. But she is a Nurse…..She took that Oath….She Believes in what she does….

WE ARE ALL SO PROUD

….She is an Amazing Nurse….

Now it is time for all the …..THANK YOU’S…. Her days were so busy. 14 hours of the day were work and transportation. That didn’t leave much time for eating, sleeping, waiting for your mail for 45 min. and of course a through shower and disinfecting. She became more physically and mentally exhausted every day. So she didn’t have a lot of time to show her appreciation. The one Company that needs a HUGE THANK YOU is Vactor Manufacturing from Streator Illinois…..

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Tammy mentioned to us she could use some Safety Glasses. Aunt Connies’, Son in Law, Matt Rinaldo works for Vactor in Streator Illinois. He went to HR to ask about Safety Glasses for the girls. By noon, he had been given around 50 Safety Glasses. HR also game him many FACE SHIELDS. Their parent Company Federal Signal had sent them to their employees. The employees had decided to give them to the Front Line people in the Medical Field that needed them. They had already given a number of them to Morris Hospital. Matt brought them to Connie who boxed them up and sent them to the girls.

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They were so needed. As soon as she received them they were gone. So not many pictures were taken. I had been reading posts on the FB site of the Staffing Agency from the other nurses. Those who had connections, were ordering them in quantity’s for their friends. The hospitals didn’t have any. They were pretty desperate to get them. These Shields were so Appreciated. So …..THANK YOU VACTOR…. also Matt and Connie for sending them to New York…..

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Face Shields and Safety Glasses from Vactor….Overlooking the Times Square… NYC

So many other items were sent. So here in Tammy’s words again are all her Thank You’s

Tammy Bergen
15 hrs ·

There are so many people I need to thank besides my family that have donated their time to make sure that we have what we needed! I want to make as many as I can but please dont be upset if I forget to mention anyone because you all made this so much easier!
1. Vactor Manufacturing in Streator Il donated a box full of safety glasses and face shield! ❤❤❤!! They are in very high demand in New York! And as soon as people seen them… they were gone! The hospitals no longer supply face shield because they are just not available anymore. I wish I could have got more pictures but there just wasn’t time. But I assure you that they were amazing! Thank you Connie Malavolti, Ashley Malavolti and Mat Rinaldo for the hook up! It was definitely needed! The shields protect us from much more than the glasses alone cuz there is a lot of coughing and spraying going on!
2. Amanda Davis for the goodies and the wonderful prayer that came with! It was very special!
3. Chauntelle Biagi-Bruer for the goodies and kind words!
4. Aunt Connie and Jeanie Lutz for getting several hand made masks for me to take at the very last minute!❤ and thank you Connie for the bag of super healing rocks! I wore them everyday!
5. Tammy Schlesinger Gunter for all the goodies and kind words!
6. Baily Jane and Betty Parks for the awesome lotions and cookies! ❤
7. Jeny Orozco for the amazing words of encouragement and all the awesome gifts!
8. Tiffany Gebhardt for the awesome gifts and kinds words!
9. Mary Jaegle Milashoski for the awesome gift of dry shampoo! (it seriously made Britt Novak’s day!)and the other goodies as well!❤❤
10. Jessica Torres for all the amazing goodies and encouragement!
11. Frances Ilnicky Van Ameyden thank you for the goodies and the great conversation that definitely brought a smile to my face!
12. Tina M Wenzel for the gifts and (over the top!) Encouragement! I am so very thankful!
13. Brenda Bickerman thank you for delivering the lysol wipes to my house before I left! I could not find any anywhere!
14. Gale Reno for the bag of snacks, gloves, mask crochet ties and other things that you sent at the last moment.
15. Nicole Bouxsien and family made several masks for us to take with.
16. The Eastgate Quilter ladies for making all the masks and redoing the design to include the laces to save our ears!❤
17. Theresa Fisher for the crocheted ear savers!
18. Bobbi Van Schaick for the box of goodies! That came along with a great story! Definitely something that I would have done! Lol
19. Sharon VanLanduit for the amazing shoe inserts! They helped soooo much!
And lastly, Katherine Twardowski for taking care of my 2 older babies while I was gone! (I really hope you will recover quickly! Lol). Tina Bergen Dolder and Ed Dolder for being everything for Carly while I cant! And for all the school teaching! And Margaret Bergen for the daily encouragement and text messages! Scottieonepaw ScottBergen and Brandy Lockett for all the love and support!
And there has been so many others who have said some of the best things! I will never forget!
Cameron Bergen and Cassy Cruz I am home! And I love you both so much! We WILL be spending some quality time together real soon! Like it or not! Lol
I truly can not say how thankful I am to have you all in my life! I have the best family and friends that anyone could ever ask for!❤❤❤
I am feel very blessed to have been a part of NYC at this time of need. But this Is definitely my home! ❤❤❤

Comments…..

Jeny Orozco Love you Tammy!!! ❤️❤️❤️

Betty Parks Thank you for giving your ALL.

Tiffany Gebhardt Np Tammy Bergen…just my way of saying thanks for what U guys went and did! U went above and beyond what u had too! Hope to see u back around soon until then take care of urself and know u got friends who care! ❤️

Tina Bergen Dolder A shout out to Brenda Holloway Bickerman, Jerimey Bouxsein Nicole and family, Gale Reno ( Erin Marie Megan Holly let your mom know!!

Megan Dose Glad your back!!! 😘❤️❤️❤️

Bobbi Van Schaick The least I can do

Mary Jaegle Milashoski So happy that what we could do for you .. made a difference and brightened your day ..!💜💜

Amanda Davis 💜💜💜💜💜

Frances Ilnicky Van Ameyden Your selflessness in this horrible time of Covid19 has shown us what Love of Neighbor is all about. God bless you!

Jeanette Brewer Stay safe and you r a hero
Stay safe

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Thank You to All who has supported and followed Tammy. I as MOM want to give a SPECIAL THANK YOU, to Tina, for being the BEST SISTER Tammy could ever have. She has done so much that you all will never know. She was their from the minute Tammy made this descion to go, by getting supplies ready and MANY MANY other things concerning Carly’s care. My Kids are all so AWESOME….Brittney is still their finishing her extended week. She is doing ok. Everyone has been so supportive of the girls and of all the Medical Personnel. These people are helping and reporting the truths of what is happening in New York City. They have answered the call not knowing where they were going to work, where they were going to stay. They all knew they were putting their life on the line…..But they all went anyway…..They worked 12 hours straight covered in PPE. So many had shortages of PPE, and much hospital supplies. Some of the story’s I read were mindboggling to think nurses had to operate in such a manner and do things that were so unethical in the hospital setting. And then the stories of the patients. So heart wrenching……So many that passed alone….With only the nurse present….The last words from the family’s on the cell phones of the Nurses….

…..Memories these Medical Personnel Will Never Forget….

Part 3…..Carrie in New York….Tammy’s Friend…..Coronavirus

This is the 3rd and last of Carries Story.  As I write this she is now home, happily in the arms of her loving family beginning her 2 week quarantine.  She has allowed me to put her story in my blog, hoping to spread the story of the truths of Coronavirus and New York City.  Some people believe, some people don’t, some people are indifferent.  Unless you are around the misery and the devastation that it is causing to human life and family’s, it is hard to imagine.  So far their is no vaccine.  Hopefully their will be one soon.  But for now we are all in SHELTER IN PLACE……The goal is to slow the curve.  Bring it down…..Slow the disease so we don’t all end up like New York City..….They have been brought to their knees…….Listen to Mayor Cuomo….Listen to the doctors and nurses or any medical staff……….Theses are the truthswp-15880095799398936151978512376002.jpg

CarrieAnn
April 20 at 5:46 AM ·

When I came here I never thought I’d be riding this bus to the hospital a 22nd time. I decided over the weekend to stay longer. They wanted a two week minimum commitment, but we will see, the urge to fly home is strong.
Someone jumped off of our hotel a few days ago. I can’t get the image out of my head, or the sound. I don’t know why THATS what I can’t reconcile, with all I’ve absorbed since arriving in New York. Maybe because all day every day I see these people fighting to breathe, fighting to get high fevers down, fighting to live.. and then, this death was deliberate. Right off our hotel. A hotel full of people who are here to save lives.mgn_1280x960_00121c00-xryah (2)

CarrieAnn
April 20 at 8:37 AM ·

Any channel we turn on is covering corona, New York City, and who’s dying from it. You know what they’re not covering?..and won’t?..who’s dying from it in prison. Why do we care, they’re just criminals right?
It’s all we can do to provide masks and medical attention to law abiding people who aren’t incarcerated. They’re child molesters and murderers, thieves…that’s what we think when we hear the word prison, because prison is for the real bad ones. Ya, I get that, because I used to think that way too. Until, in the blink of an eye, someone I loved was in prison. We are taught prison is reserved for the hopeless, the waste of time, or those unable to repent.
But it’s not. There are first offenders, and marijuana sellers in our prisons, sentenced to decades. Some of you may wonder how that is even possible in our country of all men created equal, and innocent until proven guilty. Because it’s not like that, that’s how. The sentence you receive in this United States of America is a direct reflection of what legal representation you can afford.
Bad people? No… but bad choices. They are good souls, who had to learn some lessons the hardest way, young men who are funny, generous, with big hearts. They have dreams and fears and insecurities just like we do. Their need for acceptance, or sometimes success, was so strong that they paid for it with their freedom. They made mistakes, granted big ones, and they know it. They’re well into their sentences, just like hundreds- thousands- like them. They’re not asking for an easy out or a pardon, but how about SOAP? How about not bringing known covid positive patients who are actively sick, with a fever and cough, back into the open style housing with all other men. How about feeding them, having running water for them, and allowing them access to medical screenings. They aren’t demanding rights- they’re begging for HUMANITY. They are literally sitting there waiting to die. If conditions do not change, it will be inevitable that every single man or woman incarcerated with be covid positive, and it’s a roll of the dice if they survive it. Because nothing they can do to prevent it is in their power.
They can’t choose whether or not to go outside. They can’t choose whether or not to wear a mask, or social distance.
I do not think every crime is the same, and Im not asking you to either. But which of those truly deserve death as a punishment is not for us to decide, but only God.
They may not deserve their freedom back, but do they deserve to DIE?

 

CarrieAnn 
April 22 at 9:30 PM ·

It’s been days since I’ve posted and they’ve all been a blur. One day flows into the next, and the next, when all you do is work and sleep. Yesterday I booked my flight home and my heart is full of happiness and anxiousness. No conflict, no guilt. It can’t come soon enough.
More and more moms are covid positive– actually tipping the scales, more positive than negative now. And as time goes on, more and more frequently, on top of these depleting, never-ending, 14 hour days that break your heart and stress your body…I am contacted regularly by friends, acquaintances, and even coworkers..questioning the validity of what they see on tv, they want to know if the hospitals are empty.. or if the virus is even real. If I see one more post of “do any of my friends actually know someone who’s died of Covid”…NO?! CONSIDER YOURSELF LUCKY. You will.
There’s no way the media can report anything accurately- it’s all changing too fast. First only testing the symptomatic, then testing everyone, then throw positive antibodies in there. Will we ever have the real numbers…no.
We hear Fight Song overhead, and that tells us people are recovering-today only twice-but there are still more codes than songs played overhead. There are limited supplies at times, basics like IV pumps and shoe covers for the OR. There’s still a constant flow of bodies visible out that back window, and nurses are doing things that cause genuine ethical conflict because there isn’t a choice. So if you still think corona isn’t real and is just the government trying to scare us—turn off your fn tv and come spend a day in New York.
I’ve counted days for so long..but now it’s a countdown instead of up. Three days ♥️

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CarrieAnn
April 23 at 9:46 AM ·

And there will be goodbye pics … starting now. It’s gonna take some getting used to not starting the day and ending the day with these girls..

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CarrieAnn
April 23 at 10:48 AM ·

Thank you for treating me like a life long friend not a traveler.

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CarrieAnn

April 23 at 1:45 PM ·

😩💔 goodbye cake from the labor and delivery managers. Cue the tears.

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CarrieAnn 
April 23 at 6:15 PM ·

Friendships forged in fire. Thank you both for being who you are, and scattering this experience with laughs and well timed hugs.wp-15880088478873245355909135194392.jpg

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CarrieAnn
April 24 at 10:23 PM ·

Today was my 28th day working in New York City, and my last. I never imagined that I would come here and form the relationships, the bonds, that I have with these nurses Ive worked side-by-side with for so many days in a row.  I came to New York prepared to have thick skin, but it wasn’t necessary.
The things I have learned in the past month can’t be put into words on a Facebook page. The faces that I won’t forget, the heartbreak of all the deaths, and the celebration with every discharge home.
I’ve traveled a lot in my life, but going home has never felt so good. I am a different person than I was before March 27th when I came to New York, and Im thankful for that.
CarrieAnn Munson 
April 25 at 8:48 AM ·wp-15880084904811468031293464226045.jpg

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CarrieAnn
April 25 at 8:48 AM ·

Goodbye New York ❤️wp-15880095200635519326640009480962.jpg

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Carrie is now home after 28 days.  I know New York appreciates all she’s done.  All the medical workers that have come in from around the country have felt the love of the New Yorkers.  Their marquis’s were full of “Thank You’s”  The NYFD and NYPD showed them how much they cared.  So much love was given the workers.  Many have made life long friends.  They also have many memories that will be hard to process.  The cruelty that this disease has bestowed on family’s has been devastating.  Hopefully in time  New York City will be back to a hustling and bustling city it once was……

But The Memories and the Sorrow will never be forgotten….

“Thank You Carrie”

 

Day 18….Tammy and Brittney…New York……Coronavirus

Sunday will be Day 21 for Tammy and Brittney.  I found out last nite they have extended for another week.  That doesn’t surprise me.  I know they are extremely exhausted and tired but they are so driven by their need to want to help.  Everything has been going fairly ok for them.  When they get back to the hotel at nite they are so tired.  They aren’t getting enough sleep, and I’m sure they aren’t eating right either.  I don’t hear from Brittney much, as her and Tammy have never worked in the same unit, but she is doing OK.  For some reason they move the nurses everyday to another department.  Maybe its so they don’t feel ties to the patients?  Its just my guess.  Some floors are better than others, but their is still a shortage of supplies.  Tammy told me she had a bad day the other day.  She finally told me she had been pretty upset and emotional.  The other regular staff nurses were rude, and unfriendly.  Every time she turned her back or left her cart, her supplies would disappear for a patient.  I guess when things are in short supply, other nurses just take whatever they need when they see it, because their patient needs it.  Then her patient would go without.  Of course she was the new kid on the block.   Later she found out why……That day was the funeral for a fellow nurse that had caught the virus.    She was a good friend of many of them.  So one can understand why they acted that way.  It has to be terrifying.  This is happening over and over in the hospitals.   So many in the medical field have given their lives trying to help the sick.  This is why they call this the ……FRONT LINES…..A couple of days ago, she took a day off.  She called it a ……MENTAL DAY….She slept in till 8:30am.  Her 4 other friends from OSF in Peoria where now their.  wp-15876901018368613566280702116316.jpg

 

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Their hotel is the Sheraton, several blocks away. They were still waiting for assignments. They all met that afternoon and went for a walk to Central Park.  It sure is a beautiful place right in the middle of New York City.

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Tammy with the red bandana

They all received their assignments the next day.  Two are on days at Jacobi, one at Coney Island and 1 on nights at Lincoln.  She is still getting packages.  Yesterday she got some great stuff from a good friend in our park.

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Very much needed lotion.  Their hands are so raw and cracked from all the hand washing all the time.  And some wonderful snacks….

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Yesterday Tammy was pulled off the floor.  Her team lead had her help a nurse who was having a lot of problems and was overwhelmed.  That made her feel so good.  Her lead said she would be using her again when needed.  She ended her day feeling good.  The counts in New York City are still going up…147,297  confirmed…..2,995  new cases yesterday…15,074  deaths…..but it is slowing down.  Now the President is wanting to open up the Country.  Protests are beginning.  People think their freedom has been taken away.  They want to go back to work.  They don’t feel the virus is that bad.  Its no worse than the flu…..They think its a hoax…..The government wants the economy and unemployment to improve.  Of Course, we all do.  But many counts are still going up.  They haven’t slowed down enough.  They are going to have to be so careful.  I feel the  Virus will start to escalate again.  But that’s my feeling.  Hopefully they don’t…..As of today in the Valley we have 651 cases, and 20 deaths.  In Cameron Co, we have 344 cases with 14 deaths.  We are still going up, but many of those are from 2 nursing homes.

Around the country, many of the meat packing facility’s are becoming hot spots for employees.  JBS, Smithfield, and Tyson Foods are closing many of their plants due to many employees testing positive.  So what will happen to our meat prices now.  Thankfully our freezers are full right.  The city’s are starting to organize food giveaways for families. c4635210-5a2d-430d-9dcc-0b4d0619182f_1920x1080.jpg

This is Houston.  The cars are lined up for miles waiting to participate in the Food drive.  Here in Harlingen we have the Food Pantry, and Loaves and Fishes that help feed the low income and homeless.  The City of Harlingen has united with the RGV Food Bank has organized a food giveaway and have scheduled 2 more.  The cars were lined up 2 hours early for several miles to wait for their free food.   In Harlingen we are still under SHELTER IN PLACE till May 4.  Wear those face masks in public.  No kids in cars or in stores under 14.  But they are starting to loosen the rules.  Retail sale non essential stores are opening up with curbside, phone or internet sales.  State Parks are also opening with Social distancing and masks.  Hopefully this doesn’t backfire. 

Meanwhile in Granville…..School Lessons Continue…..

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Carly is going to School on the Computer with Zoom…..Amazing to me…

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PE on Zoom…..I guess that works….I’m sure 3 of them together makes PE easier….But knowing those 3, I bet they are rolling in laughter….

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This has to be difficult for Austin.  He doesn’t sit still to well.  Poor Tina, conducting school with 3 different lesson plans.  That has to be very hard.  At least their not into Algebra or any of the harder subjects…..I don’t envy the parents these days.  They now have to be wives, mothers, and now teachers, 24 hrs a day. wp-15876902952341077615794487140857.jpg

It does look like an end in sight for New York City…..Tammy said theirs no new Nurses coming from their Staffing Agency that she knows of.  Lets hope that is true for everyone…..Hopefully in the next several weeks, all of the Medical Staff from around the country will be back home….and HEALTHY…..Hoping the City can take back their Hospitals and function in the manner they all were trained to do and want to do.

Our Wonderful Eastgate Ladies….

Our Park in Harlingen, EASTGATE RV & MH PARK is such a wonderful park.  We are all like family.  We may squabble like children, but when it comes down to it, we all take care of one another in need.wp-15874273970853319737609794760507.jpg

Several weeks ago one of our residents came home from the hospital, and our ladies formed a group called Mercy Meals.  Everyone took a day to bring her a meal, Someone walked her dog Cloe, and did her shopping.  These are things that are done many times through the years.  …..Neighbors helping Neighbors.….The men help each other with projects and make sure the single residents needs are fulfilled.  Since the Coronavirus arrived, we have had the Shelter in Place Rule, this has been the best place to be.  We can still walk, visit from the driveways but still maintain our distance.  Now we have the new rule ……

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Alice, Jo (Cookie), Delores, Gloria, Cindy, Jean….Absent…Barbara, Sandra, and Sandy

THE COUNTY REQUIRES MASKS WORN IN THE PUBLIC.  No more than 2 people in the car, if so, you must both wear masks.  No Children under 14 in the car or in public, unless its an essential reason.  So again, residents are making sure everyone has their grocery’s.  These wonderful ladies are part of a Quilt group.  So How did this all begin…Gloria’s Daughter and family live in Harlingen.  She called her mom one day and was worried about them and all the people in Eastgate.   She wanted her mom to try to make some masks.  Well that’s all it took and this little group unfolded and started making masks.  Gloria did a lot of research on U Tube, and they found the pattern they wanted.  They started making them and offering them to park residents.  Before you know it, everyone was wanting one.  The ladies started an Assembly lineCindy uses the pattern to cut the material.  The Masks have an outer and an inside lining .  Then it goes house to house as each step progresses, including inserting a small pipe cleaner in the nose area, so it can be fitted around the nose.  wp-15874139638868783632664697250740.jpg

The last person to receive it is Jean.  She takes old T-shirts and cuts 1″ pieces around the body of the shirt.  Then when you stretch them out, they are a perfect tie string.

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It is then threaded through the channels on each end of the mask so that it can be tied behind the head.  All of the material has been from their stashes or donated.  Some people like elastic instead.  Now elastic is so hard to find.  I went shopping one day thinking I would buy them some elastic.  Walmart has no elastic, their notions department is cleaned out.  No hand or machine needles.  Its crazy.  Hobby Lobby has closed, so they make do with what they have.wp-15874282036131892365195255905846.jpg

Now Theresa seen this pattern and made these.  They are used with the elastic masks.  They fit on the back of your neck to take the pressure off your ears.  Their so cute and colorful.  They were also given to anyone who wanted them.

The ladies  have been doing this going on 3 weeks.  They have made around 500 so far.  They have given them to anyone in the park who has asked.  I sent 4 to my daughter and friend in New York, another lady asked for one for her cousin who is a Marine.  They ended up giving her 12 to send for the whole unit.  Many people have sent them to family members up north.  Cindy works for the Food Pantry.  They only do drive through now.  They hand them out to anyone in the car who needs one.  They also supply the homeless with all their needs including the masks.  Frank, who also works with Cindy asked for one for his Grandma.  She is a Dallas Cowboy fan.  Cindy managed to find one and gave it to her.  Frank said his Grandma Cried...She was so Happy...Frank also gave 2 to 2 disabled guys he tries to take care of.  They were happy because the nearest store they go in wouldn’t let them in without masks. wp-15874140576892166307840441015875.jpg

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Childs size and an Adult

Then they had a Doctors Office contact them.  Quite a few went to them.  Also a Health Care facility in Harlingen ordered 50.  They picked them up and ordered another 50.  While I was with the ladies today, the facility called and said they would be over tonight to pick up the second 50 and they ordered another 150…..OMG….So the ladies will be…. busy busy… this week.  They do not charge anyone.  If you insist, they will take donations.  Aren’t they just amazing.  I know we are all so lucky to be living in Eastgate.  No matter what,  Eastgate is always here to help.

……YOU LADIES ARE AWESOME…..Thank You…..

So if anyone local needs a mask, just contact us.  They will supply them.  Just local, no shipping.  It looks like we may all be using them for awhile.  Such strange times we live in…   But ….

WE LIVE IN THE BEST PLACE…..FRIENDLY EASTGATE RV & MH PARK

Part 2…..Carrie in New York….Tammy’s Friend…..Coronavirus

This will be the 2nd half of Carries journey fighting the Coronavirus in New York City at Jacobi Hospital in the BronxCarrie arrived and started working on March 28, ahead of Tammy.  She is an OB, Labor and Delivery Nurse.  That is usually a very joyful unit.  But can you imagine being in Labor and your lungs are not working anymore?  You can’t catch your breath?  Not only that, the baby is not getting oxygen anymore either.  So so scary to even imagine for those of us who have had childbirth.  So her is the 2nd half of her story, taken from her FB posts.  All entirely in her words…..

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Carrie on the Right

CarrieAnn 
April 10 at 6:38 AM ·

THANK YOU Crystal  for my package!!! …we’ve been best friends for so long you’re just a part of me, and that’s why I wasn’t surprised at all that it was full of things only a best friend would know to send. I love u sooo much! Love the books, and wax melts, the food- all of it!
Ps- those green olives!! 🤣😛🙌🏼wp-15873097126653448977866447739456.jpg

CarrieAnn 
April 10 at 8:23 AM ·

Shout out to GO DASH DOT for generously sending these bags to all the L&D nurses here at Jacobi! Thank you for thinking of us during this time, it makes our job a little easier!wp-15873097287916061254308257198235.jpg

CarrieAnn 
April 10 at 10:48 AM ·

These two, making day FOURTEEN doable .. Janice and Alexa

CarrieAnn 
April 12 at 6:25 AM ·

I haven’t posted the past couple evenings because I’m just drained. The word “tired” doesn’t mean anything to me anymore. We’ve all fallen into and accepted a cycle of bus, work, wait, bus, sleep. And there’s not enough of the sleep in the cycle. Now the company is combining buses so we have to be up and on the bus a half hour earlier. It sounds like a small amount of time, but that’s two hits of the snooze button. It’s precious. I’d completely given up any attempt at doing anything with my face on day 4. You get nothing…..wait, you get eyebrows. That’s all you get. (Thanks Haley )
And for anyone who truly knows me…well..
Friday was my 14th day working in New York. I listen to the fairly regular pace of overhead pages calling codes, all day long and subconsciously count them in my head, always realizing by the end of my shift that I tuned it out at some point and lost count. But Friday there was an overhead code page to a room we knew, and our hearts stopped. Go back and read Day 8..when we sectioned a mom who was counting on God to “get her through it”.
There are more and more covid positive moms on our floor. I am cautious with every patient, but it’s unnerving when you KNOW she’s positive.
I’ve felt more and more a part of this unit, I know their stories and their lives..how much they love this city and how it’s changed their lives in so many more ways than we can imagine. Yesterday I had the first thought that it may be hard to leave them. These are nurses just like us..but they can’t leave..they will be here until the last covid + patient comes thru, and I can’t imagine how long that will take.
Yesterday was Saturday, Day 15, and for the most part it acted like a Saturday. Here’s to hoping today acts like a Sunday.
Remember when our biggest thought on Easter Sunday was if there will be enough table space for everyone, or if we will need to set up card tables? Today I will be in the same building with countless families who just pray their person doesn’t die on Easter. Make Easter as Easter-y as you can for your kids, have the dinners and watch them enjoy their baskets, and get pictures of that egg hunt!… but let’s pray with them.
Thanks everyone♥️

CarrieAnn
April 13 at 10:27 PM ·

I loved my day off. I only got out of bed to eat…and take a few pictures on the walk to get food with these great gals Shameka, Marlea and Akila

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CarrieAnn 
April 14 at 8:45 PM ·

I’m not sure if a day off made it better, or worse, but I know when the alarm went off there were two words in my head and the first one began with f and the second word was “this”.
Day 18 saw me circulating the OR for my covid+ patient, recovering her, trying to reassure and comfort her, while worrying about myself if Im honest..worrying if I’m doing enough to protect myself every time I went in and out of that room. Trying to mEinimize the trips in it at all, and trying to convince myself it wasn’t less ..a lot less…than it would have been for a healthy post-op patient.
My sister has monitored the New York trend of Covid positive cases. I arrived on the 27th. On the 31st there were 66,497 cases in the state. Today there’s 201,208.
I still see the procession of bodies out the windows toward the back side of the hospital. I just tell myself they were all 100 year old’s who lived a full life.
One of the hospitals plays Alicia Keys and Jay Z’s Empire State of Mind overhead every time someone gets extubated, and nurses are saying it’s playing more and more throughout the day.
I don’t know how many babies we had today, but most of the labor rooms were occupied, and still..the unit focuses on births, new life, and holding each other up. Nobody feels sorry for themselves here, there’s no complaining, everyone smiles..as if it’s their sole responsibility keep moral up..the cheerleaders for New York City. And I wonder if every OB unit in the city is like this right now.
Praying really hard for the nurses that are working day in and day out in ICU, ER, med/surg (that are basically ICU’s) with no cheerleaders. I couldn’t do what they do.

CarrieAnn 
April 15 at 8:14 PM ·

Today Jacobi Medical Center started playing “Fight Song” overhead throughout the whole hospital every time a patient is extubated or discharged. I heard it 4 times today. Talk about goosebumps.. tears all over the place🙌🏼♥️

wp-15873414953148768099073361537901.jpgCarrieAnn 
April 16 at 6:20 AM ·

Someday, healthcare workers that aren’t answering you today will need to talk. They are going to tell you about the patients who died without their families. How their co-workers were getting sick all around them. How women gave birth in masks. How they held the hand of their dying patients because no visitors/family are allowed in the hospitals. How terrible it was to fear going to work and then fear going home to their families. How they worked with skeleton staff and heavy gear or no gear and had to make it through every day hoping not to be exposed. Someday, they will need to talk again. They will need you then, but today they just need to go to war with Covid 19. @nurseforest

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CarrieAnn 
Yesterday at 6:16 AM ·

Starting out Day 21, I can’t really process what I’ve just done. It’s been so exhausting , I’ll never casually throw around the phrase “I’m so tired” again..it’s been heartbreaking, it’s been terrifying at times, things I’ve seen, heard and done will replay in my mind for many days ahead..and it’s been indescribably rewarding. What I’ve learned about people, and myself, the last 3 weeks has changed me forever.
I’m not sure what decision day 22 will bring, I feel compelled to stay longer- these nurses are my pack now- but my heart is longing for home and normalcy. I know whatever I do, it won’t be my decision I’ll just be following the path He wants me to take because the one thing that’s got me this far is putting God in charge.
Thank you.. to each of you that have posted and messaged me with your kind words, I felt it every day. Thank you to my kids, who have checked on me daily and sent loving silly texts, who still made me feel needed like moms are, it kept me going..and Joshua, who supported me with so much love, and uplifting encouragement when all he really wanted was for me to stay safe at home. I have never loved my people more, and Im going to try to live it, and remember how all this feels when I get home and comfortable.. life is short and none of us know when it’s over, live a life of integrity..forgive quickly and love tenderly.
That’s my takeaway.

So yesterday was Day 21, the last day of Carrie’s contract.  At that time she had to decide if she wanted to stay.  They now have the offer to work 60 hours week by week.  After a day off, she has decided to stay another week.  Even so she is longing for home and her family, she feels a need to stay and help a little longer.

 She is an amazing HERO.….Just like all the other Health Care Workers.  They are giving of themselves, putting their life at risk to help.  Many have also given up their jobs as hospitals won’t give them the time off.  They have answered the call and only had 2 to 3 days to organize their life for 3 weeks, and be in New York ready to work.  They had to leave their spouse or partner, some arranging child care, talk to their present employer, and organize and pack everything needed.  They also have to arrange their own transportation.  They have no idea what or where they will be working till they receive their assignment.  Many have walked into a very chaotic and disorganized hospital short of so many needed supply’s.  It was characterized as “GOING TO WAR”.  Their are no rules.  You do the best you can.  Many times it isn’t possible to save a life for many reasons, but move on to the next one in line.  Ill post a few of Carries pictures on her day off.  Then she will be included in the next posts, along with Tammy, and Brittney.  They are at Marquis Marriot on Times Square, and working at Lincoln Memorial in the Bronx.  They are on Day 15 tomorrow

 

CarrieAnn
3 hrs ·

The only taste of sightseeing I’ll have while I’m here..an empty Times Square.

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..Please continue to follow all 3 girls while they finish out their stay in New York…