Our friend Marcia’s dad died of Covid-19 in the spring.
It was of course a shock to the family. He was not in the best health but he was chugging along with a happy life. Marcia was in charge of making the arrangements so she began calling west side Detroit funeral homes. But no one could take the body.
They were all booked solid. That is how much of an impact Covid made on the inner city. Finally, Marcia called a friend whose family owned one of the homes.
“Can you do me a big favor,” she asked the friend. “We gotta bury dad. But no one will take him.”
Finally, she found a spot because she had connections.
In 2020 plenty of people did not take this virus seriously. I guess it all depends on your reality. Between the wife and I we knew of 11 people — mostly in Detroit’s black community — who died of Covid-19 in the spring. During the fall surge I lost count of the number of people who were stricken with the disease. I estimate about 15 friends and family were slowed by the disease although nobody died thankfully.
One friend said that she would have died, her doctor said, if she caught the spring strand of the disease. Doctors now knew how to treat the disease. Another friend is over Covid but continues to have breathing issues.
“I wish they would tell you about the long term lingering effects,” she said.
We had four family members get Covid on the second surge. But they are all fine now.
It all began with a helicopter crash in California where Kobe Bryant, daughter Gianna and seven others perished. 2020 was all down hill from there. George Floyd was murdered by police. It shocked a nation. Black Lives Matter either became a political movement, a call to duty or a plea for help.
We fought in the streets and on social media. The battles on my twitter feed regarding Donald Trump, BLM and other issues became so intense that I threw ice water on my daily battles and begged people to be more civil.
Our minds were closed along with our favorite restaurants, bowling alleys, gyms and sporting venues. We all needed a shot and a beer along with a hug. But we could not do any of that because of social distancing.
A man scolded me for wearing a mask in public. Said masks do not work. Then a few weeks later this guy caught the disease and laid up in a hospital for two weeks barely able to breathe.
I needed to escape the madness even if it was a few minutes a day. I found my respite in daily three to six mile walks around nearby lakes where I got exercise and met nice people along the way.
I miss Comerica Park, Founders, Harry’s Detroit, Willsons, Mexican Lindo and other hang out spots. But I shall survive. Let’s do anything to get through this health crisis.
2020 wasn’t just about Kobe and Covid.
Where did the time go? Daughter Celine is finishing up her senior year at Stanford with a 3.8 GPA and has been hired by a consulting firm in Chicago to begin her work career. Son Brandon is a freshman at Michigan State and will be moving out of the house in two weeks.
We are soon to be empty nesters. For those who went through it or are going through it, what is it like to only to go through life only with your wife?
If anyone cares, health wise I am doing fine. Having a stroke four years ago woke my ass up and I changed my life style. I had another physical in 2020 with encouraging numbers. I am no longer a Type 2 diabetic. Over the last three years my A1C, which measures sugar levels in the blood, dropped from 10.8 to 5.3.
Doctors want my blood pressure slightly elevated. 130-150. My last BP came in at 129. Not bad.
I feel good not great. I am a little sore most days. If we ever run into each other and you knock me down, I might need a little help getting up.
Let’s hope for a better 2021.
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