"Carmel Manor Loves Our Families"
Easter Parade brings *together* community among social distancing order
By Jessie Eden
Amidst all the worry and uncertainty, there was a beautiful, vibrant bright spot on Thursday afternoon. These 'bright spots' mean even more during these stressful times and they provide a sense of hope and joy.
These two things may seem like they are in short supply right now...but that couldn't be further than the truth and Thursday's parade at Carmel Manor is proof of that.
The Fort Thomas community came together to throw an Easter Parade for the residents at Carmel Manor and it was one glorious bright spot among a rough Spring.
And, when we say came together, we're talking a parade with around 150 cars! The long line of cars met at the Reserves in Tower Park and slowly wound around the bend towards Carmel Manor and down the drive. Car after car excitedly beeped their horns as they approached the building.
The Carmel Manor residents, lined up in wheelchairs six feet apart, along the half-circle drive. The residents wore colorful hats and vibrant blankets in the sunny Springtime weather.
|Carmel Manor residents line up to watch the parade, six feet apart of course.|
A giant sign that said "Carmel Manor Loves Our Families" hung across the entrance, decorated with love and care. Another sign hung along a fence on the drive.
Caretakers in medical masks and residents alike waived and shouted joyfully at loved ones from the curb. Even the Easter Bunny made an appearance!
|Even the Easter Bunny made an appearance!|
Many community members who participated in the parade decorated their cars in bright pastel streamers, signs and balloons. They brought flowers, gifts and other goodies for their loved ones, showering them in the love they couldn't physically express.
There were also two, large, furry parade members in a convertible. Talk about riding in style! (FTM has a full video of the pups at the end of this article)
|Those are some cool dogs!|
At various points, the parade allowed drivers to stop for a moment and shout to their loved ones and say hello and how much they missed them. There were smiles...but there were also tears from the residents (and most likely, a few drivers) and longing backward glances from the drivers as they circled the drive and left the route and drove out of the parking lot.
It was heartwarming and bittersweet as an observer for Fort Thomas Matters. This is a hard time for all of us. It isn't fair but it's the reality we're living in right now. It's so hard to see someone you love and not be able to give them a hug....as a self-proclaimed 'hugger' of people I've often just met, I understand this at my very core.
But - we WILL make it through this and think 'Remember when the community came together for this beautiful thing and made the best of it? It was so hard to do...but at least we did something!'