Please pardon me for letting out a little emotion. Kalamazoo County sent out a release with a statistical breakdown of those who have died from coronavirus. Maybe it's because this lethal disease scares me to the core; maybe it's because I'm old enough or experienced enough to know there's a story behind everyone of those lives that have been lost.

The release this afternoon simply said:

"Kalamazoo County Health & Community Services Department (HCS) received notification of a death in Kalamazoo County attributed to COVID-19 yesterday. The individual was an older adult between the ages of 60-79 years and did not have underlying medical conditions. This brings the total number of deaths in Kalamazoo County to twelve (12), with all being 60+ years old." - Kalamazoo County Health Dept.

Maybe you get a tiny false sense of security when you see or hear statistics that say a victim had health issues, or was older, whatever that means. But take no solace in that. Maybe here they were old and/or sick, but in so many places, the victims are young, some frail, some not. The randomness of this is maddening, an invisible killer in our midst.

Now, a child won't know a grandparent, another child won't see the look in a parent's eyes when being introduced to their own grandchild. A situation will come up, and there won't be mom or dad to call, asking for advice on how to handle that, or even how to fix something like a appliance. It's not like people haven't been dying since the beginning of time, but, all of the sudden, 100,000 or any figure, are just gone, out of our lives.

When I have too much time to think, I think about "what if". A simple, innocent rub of the eye or nose or ear, and boom, next stop, a "virtual funeral". And that's all she wrote.

I know nobody promised me fair. I guess, I just keep on washing my hands, wearing a mask at the store, and social distance as best as one can.

If it's any comfort, we're all scared.

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A Nearly Empty Kalamazoo



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