In the midst of the pandemic last August, we released a special issue saluting frontline heroes. But as the year progressed, different types of heroes emerged. Community volunteerism soared. It seemed no one was going to be left behind and no need unmet. So we dedicate this special theme issue to community heroes. We certainly couldn’t cover every heroic effort nor every area of want. So let these stories stand as examples of what all of us can do.
So many owe so much to so few. That paraphrase of Winston Churchill’s famous statement during the Battle of Britain was in our minds as we planned this issue. This can rightly be called the Battle of the World. And proportionately, there may not be many more heroes to protect us today as there were then. The few. The precious few.
Our Kevin Woodhouse once wrote a piece that you can see on our website - thesuburban.com — called “Three little words.” He called them the most important words for our time right now. No, the words aren’t “I love you” though those would apply as well. He wrote that the most important words for today are, “Please” and “Thank you.”
He called for us to be civil, courteous and to show gratitude for what our heroes are doing. This is this newspaper’s “Thank you.”
In articles in our hard copy and on our website, you will read their stories. Those we have profiled represent hundreds of others. Our fragile lives are so much in their hands. We salute them. They are truly profiles in courage.
But let us not forget that this crisis has also brought out the best in all of us. Of course our medical professionals are first and foremost. But the definition of heroes has greatly expanded. So many others have literally put themselves on the line to keep our society going. They are the journalists that keep us informed. Our neighbours who make food for the hungry and meet the needs of isolated seniors. The homecare workers. Our teachers. Those in financial services that kept what remained of our commerce and our personal needs running smoothly. The workers in pharma that keep making the pills that keep us well. The truckers and delivery people that bring them to our pharmacies. The pharmacy and grocery employees that keep things going. And so many more. We’re proud to salute them and to bring you their stories.
One final thought. We are very gratified that so many of you appreciate our website. Since this crisis started you have visited us in record numbers. And our Facebook page as well. You’ve also given a great reception to our newest venture “The Suburban On Air” where we bring you five important programs every week. And you have engaged with our video reports by the thousands. Our staff is working around the clock to give you the latest developments and all the news you need to know from medical to financial to political. They’re as good as it gets. And nothing can match the immediacy of our digital and social media platforms. But we’d just like you to take a moment and appreciate how special hard copy still is. Look at the pages. Look at the faces. And never forget how special it is to spread heroes’ stories out in front of you, and as you spread out the pages around you...enter their world.