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Page last updated on September 6, 2021 at 4:21 pm

Hi, this is Mayor John Hamilton sharing a message with you all on Monday, April 27th. I hope you're doing well. I just wanted to give some updates to our community.

You may know that our family has had direct involvement with the coronavirus over the last few weeks. We actually lost my mother-in-law who lived at Bell Trace for over seven years. So I lost her to coronavirus last week. A terrible blow to us. This happened while my wife Dawn was in the hospital for 10 nights fighting COVID.

Thank you to the wonderful staff of IU Health Bloomington Hospital and so many people who are helping people like Dawn get through this disease. They saved her life, and she's back home, which we're very grateful for. But the loss of my mother-in-law, like many thousands across the country and the disease that Dawn struggled against, reminds us how serious this is. This disease takes people from us, and it is among us getting people sick here in Bloomington and of course across our area.

I do want to remind you that this is a very real danger. Your attention to it, your physical distancing, your washing your hands, your staying home if you're sick, your making sure that you don't take unnecessary trips are all really important because people are being affected by this every day.

Now, I do want to thank you, because I believe that the measures that we're taking here locally have indeed really helped. Our hospital has not been overwhelmed with cases. We've been able to flatten the curve and keep our health system protected in volume so that they are able to provide the incredible care that they can provide as long as we keep that curve flat. So continuing the physical distancing, continuing the steps, the protocols of not taking unnecessary trips, is really important.

I'll also again thank our city employees, hundreds of whom are working every day on-site, from first responders to water plants, to the bus system, to sanitation workers, and on and on. Thank them as so many other workers are making it possible for all of us to keep functioning as a community. So keep that good work up. We're not done. We're not out of the woods. We have helped flatten the curve, and so we need to keep doing what we're doing.

Now, we are starting to think about how does this evolve? We're in a marathon, not a sprint. Maybe we're done with the sprint phase, we're in the marathon phase. We're going to be talking about, as a community, how do we keep moving forward? Will there be opening up? Yes, there will. When is the question. And how? Almost certainly, it will be incremental. It will be step by step, piece by piece as this kind of business operates and begins to open up or this kind of facility begins to open up. We've seen that in our farmers' market, for example, as we've changed how we operate. This coming weekend, you'll see the farmers' market will return downtown, in new protocols though.

That's going to be the story over the weeks and months ahead, and I appreciate your patience as we follow the health experts and identify how we can keep proceeding as a community to help more jobs and help more life return as we can to what we hope for. But it's going to be a process, and it's going to be a step-by-step process. We're going to follow the science, we're going to work together as a community to do that, and I just appreciate your attention to that.

Keep doing what you're doing. It matters. It's helped. It's tamped and flattened the curve, and we need to keep doing that. I can tell you personally, the stakes are really high. Families face these challenges every day, and our commitment to continuing to stop the spread of this disease, our continuing commitment to that is really important.

So thanks for all you're doing. Stay in touch with the media and each other online. I believe in physical distancing. It doesn't mean you need to be socially distant. You can call and email and be in touch with people to keep those social connections. Thank you so much for so many volunteers doing so many good things in Bloomington. We'll keep in touch, keep taking care of each other, and keep taking care of Bloomington. Thanks very much.