Covid 19. Sick of hearing about it yet? We are all asking ourselves, when will this go away? Obviously not any time soon because cases are surging worldwide again; however, when you take into consideration that there have been 240,000 U.S. deaths from Covid this year in a population of 328 million, it's not as bad as it could have been. By comparison, it is projected that 606,000 people will die of cancer in the U.S. this year and 665,000 people died from heart disease in 2019.
Of course, to anyone who has lost someone to this horrible virus, it has been extremely painful, and we send our deepest condolences. Any loss is tragic, and we understand your grief. We, personally, know of people who have suffered through this virus and a two people who have passed away, so it’s no small matter.
Fortunately though, most of our populace are continuing to be cautious and following all restrictions. Also, it appears that our medicines to combat this illness have vastly improved. It is estimated that over 3.5 million have already recovered from this virus here in the U.S., however, that is just an estimate as many people did not report having it. If you were to catch Covid now (versus when it first appeared), you have only a 2.3% chance of dying from it, so I guess that's something to be comforted by in this time of unease.
No matter what, we are all tired of dealing with it.... the masks (no more smiles, hard to hear sometimes, people who have to read lips in real trouble), the six feet of separation (which make lines appear very long, haha), the isolation and loneliness, and just the inconvenience of it all. Will the vaccine help? When will it be released? Will this be a mandatory thing? Or could this virus die down on its own? There are many who say this virus won’t go away until next winter!
We just have to remain diligent and wear those masks and wash those hands and pray for an end to it all.
* On October 20, 2020, at our first meeting after five months of no meetings because of the virus, we had a good turnout. The Executive Board made a recommendation to raise our Death Benefit from up to $1,000 to up to $1,250 starting on January 1, 2020. A motion was made and seconded, and unanimously passed by the membership to approve this raise.
Also at the meeting, Mr. Randy Hart was our guest speaker (hired by the Fire and Police Unions). He spoke and answered questions about our health care plan that will be changing January 1, 2021. This new plan with Aetna will replace Care First and Silver Script. Please see Mike May’s article on Page 2 & 3.
Lastly at the meeting, nominations were made for the next two years for our Board of Directors, and at the November meeting were elected with no opposition.
President: Daryl Buhrman
1st VP: Richard Nevin
2nd VP: Patrick Youells
Treasurer: Don Kent
Secretary: Kathy Conrad
Board of Trustees: Charles Brawner
Board of Governors: Mike May
Sgt. At Arms: Ellis (Ditty) Baldwin
Trustees Barry Powell and Ken Dickstein, and Board of Governors Bob Haukdal and Dan Fickus were not up for reelection this year.
Thank you for having confidence in us for two more years.
* I’m sure many of you have heard by now that Mayor Jack Young vetoed Councilman Ryan Dorsey’s bill that would rename a city monument dedicated to explorer Christopher Columbus to instead honor victims of police violence. The bill would have placed this memorial close to another memorial honoring officers who died in the line of duty. This was distressing to many active officers, retired officers, family members of officers lost in the line of duty, and even concerned citizens. Many, including myself, wrote letters to Mayor Young and the entire City Council in protest of this bill.
I applaud Mayor Young, the five City Council members and Commissioner Harrison who worked together to veto this bill. While I can understand that people want a memorial, to have it placed so close to the police memorial was inappropriate .
* I hope everyone has and will enjoy the holidays.
* At this point in time, our holiday get-together will be December 15th , although it appears we will only be able to have a 50% capacity gathering. We intend to have a great feast for all members who are weary of 2020 and just want to celebrate our collective holidays, and we will draw our yearly raffle on that date. As in the past two meetings, all safety measures will be in place to ensure your good health.
P.S. I want to send a special thank you to all who sent well wishes/cards after my mishap in August. I hope to never repeat that again.
P.S.S. From Mike Mancuso regarding our Pension:
We received word today from Charles Monk (Saul Ewing), the lead attorney in our pension lawsuit. The Court of Appeals has agreed to take up the case from the Court of Special Appeals and to hear it this coming February 2021.
This is good news because we can now skip a step and should have a decision sometime in August 2021 (if not sooner).