All of us have had a very challenging year and a half dealing with COVID-19 and its rippling effects. It has brought so very many changes to our lives–losing family members and friends to coronavirus, getting sick, Having to deal with the virus at work in a medical facility or school, learning new computer skills for work and helping children with school, having to miss family reunions and numerous social functions, missing worship. The lists keep going.

Most people took the disease seriously and cooperated by wearing masks and getting vaccines when they became available. The pandemic brought us disease that had not been seen in the United States for over 100 years, when about 675,000 Americans died in the influenza epidemic. We still are dealing with the effects of COVID-19, with over 43,500,000 Americans having been infected with the virus, and more than 700,000 have died. Most Americans have survived and even thrived, but it has hit our country very hard.

Mary Kay Turner is a retired teacher who is also a board member, volunteer mediator and trainer for Mediation Services of Adams County.

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