I was mentioning that people’s true selves, their true spirits come out in times like these.
Here is the letter New York’s Gov. Andrew Cuomo received from a selfless retired Kansas farmer named Dennis Ruhnke, Gov. Cuomo read it at one of his press conferences and then posted it online, humanity at its best:
Dear Mr. Cuomo,
I seriously doubt that you will ever read this letter as I know you are busy beyond belief with a disaster that has befallen our country. We are a nation in crisis, of that there is no doubt. I’m a retired farmer hunkered down in northeast Kansas with my wife who has but one lung and occasional problems with her remaining lung. She also has diabetes. We are in our seventies now and frankly I am afraid for her. Enclosed, find a solitary N95 masks, left over from my farming days. It has never been used. If you could would you please give this mask to a nurse or doctor in your state. I have kept four masks for my immediate family. Please keep on doing what you do so well. Which is to lead.
Dennis and Sharon
Dennis thought the governor would never read the letter. By now I think the whole world has read it.
So I’m getting ready for the big move. No, I haven’t put my place up for sale yet and I haven’t been house hunting, but I have been cleaning out closets and draws, trying to lighten the load by getting rid of things I don’t need. Also, it’s something to do while cooped up at home.
I’m donating them.
Look at this book, very interesting, ended up at the top of the pile.
I never read it. I didn’t read most of these books. For a few years, I was receiving books daily, sometimes three to four books a day. They were coming from publishers who wanted me to review their books! I don’t know how I got on the lists, but all the big publishers sent me books – Doubleday, Random House, Simon & Schuster, etc. I didn’t know how to get off the lists so I kept receiving them and one day after maybe three or four years it stopped.
They are filling up the house. It’s time to get rid of them. Most books these days I read on Kindle. But to be honest, if I wasn’t planning on moving, I would keep them. It seems like all the people in the know have lots of books!
A few years ago I was in the hospital for eight days and I got such an appreciation for everyone who worked there, especially the nurses. While the doctors were in and out sparingly, the nurses did everything, every day. But the whole hospital staff were heroes, they were angels to me, even down to the guy who changed the light bulb.
They all treated me with love and respect and you can imagine now how extra special all of these people are. They are there to help others. Every day of their lives. That’s their calling.
I vowed to volunteer at the hospital, because even the volunteers were wonderful to me. But I never did it. I’m not sure why, it’s so easy, the hospital is right next door, I can walk over.
My cousin volunteers at a hospital in New York, she does something there every Saturday. I thought she volunteered at the Elmhurst Hospital that they keep talking about on the news – ground zero for caronavirus in our country. She lives near there, but she is not at that hospital, but another cousin is – he is a cop in NY, that’s his precinct. He is at that hospital three days a week. I worry about them, I’m close to my cousins, they are like brothers and sisters to me.
Of course the hospital workers are not the only super heroes out there today – the police, the fire departments, the transit workers, all the service workers, all the people who put their lives on the line by simply leaving the house in the day are the super heroes including the grocery store workers, the teachers, etc.
I love the memes I see these days with Batman and Superman and all the superheros saluting the healthcare workers.
Lichtenstein’s “Masterpiece” photo by Dan Kitwood / Getty Images file
This Lichtenstein painting called, “Masterpiece,” recently sold for $165 million by art collector Agnes Gund and of that, Ms. Gund is donating $100 million to start a social justice fund which she hopes will lower the prison population in the US.
The money will go to the Art For Justice Fund.
From their website: “Over the next five years (2017-2022), the Art for Justice Fund (A4JF) will support innovative advocacy and interventions aimed at safely cutting the prison population in states with the highest rates of incarceration, and strengthening the education and employment options for people leaving prison. In addition, the Fund will support selected artistic initiatives that enable artists to bear witness to the injustices of the system and speak to the potential of people enmeshed in it.”
Ms. Gund has six African American grandchildren so this hits home for her. She told The New York Times that “she has worried about their future as they’ve matured, particularly in light of shootings of black teenagers like Trayvon Martin in Florida.”
More here at NBC News.
Early Saturday morning, we had a special bike event in town. The D. Wade CommUNITY Bike Ride took place, hosted by former Miami Heat star Dwyane Wade and his wife, actress Gabrielle Union.
Hundreds turned out for the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT)’s event, partnered with City of Miami Mayor Tomas Regalado and our district Commissioner Ken Russell (I saw Ken, riding his bike, didn’t see the mayor).
It was a beautiful morning for the event. Sunny and pretty right on the water. “It’s great to get kids outdoors interacting with positive role models,” said Commissioner Ken Russell. “I can’t wait to ride through Coconut Grove with Dwyane Wade.”
The ride started at about 8 am and went for about 6 to 7 miles around Center and South Grove. There were events at Regatta Park and outside City Hall before and after the ride.
It was one of those days where the whole town came out and everyone knew everyone else.