Many experts speaking about the coronavirus have referred to the 1918 Spanish flu that struck during the time of World War I. The flu killed more than 20 million worldwide.

The coronavirus also is a reminder of World War II in that American citizens contributed to the war effort in a variety of ways, much in the same way neighbors are helping neighbors today.

During World War II, Americans bought bonds, rationed food and other consumer goods, grew their own vegetables and went to work in wartime industries, especially women. Women and children knitted socks and packed boxes for soldiers, rolled bandages and made surgical dressings.

In eastern Kentucky, individuals and organizations are doing what they can to help in any way they can.

Neighbors are checking on one another, offering to delivery groceries.

Pharmacies and grocery stores are offering pickup and delivery, social distancing their customers and taking cautions to protect their employees from infection.

Restaurant workers muddle through to feed people and keep their businesses running.

Those who can sew (and those who can’t very well) are making masks and other items for use by front-line workers.

Food is donated to health care workers and first responders to show appreciation.

Kudos to all who have made a contribution, even if that contribution is simply staying in and staying safe.

It’s unlikely coronavirus will be resolved soon. Not only do we have to pull together until the problem is solved, we must continue to help each other after we have conquered the coronavirus. At the risk of sounding overly dramatic, this is a turning point for humanity. It’s a time for human beings across the globe to practice empathy for one another and to come together to support one another. We are doing it. Let’s keep that feeling going beyond the pandemic and into the future, for as far as we can imagine.

Recommended for you