Thursday, April 23, 2020

Hospital, Nursing Homes Get Drive-By Thank Yous

If you like the sound of honking car horns, than the above video has more than five minutes of it for you to enjoy in a good cause, thanking medical workers at Pottstown Hospital fighting the coronavirus pandemic.

Photo by Evan Brandt
Pottstown Hospital workers wave to the parade of cars
honking horns and carrying signs to show their appreciation
for the workers fighting coronavirus.
Pottstown Hospital workers were once again treated to an automotive cacophony Wednesday evening as a parade of more than 40 vehicles, horns blaring, lights blinking and drivers waving circled past the front entrance.

Like the event held last week featuring first responder vehicles, the event was staged to show appreciation for the medical workers at Pottstown Hospital who are on the front lines fighting the COVID-19 virus.

Photo by Evan Brandt
Workers on the floor dealing with COVID-19 cases held up a
heart to show their appreciation for the parade.
The parade was organized by Frank Warner, a North Coventry resident who has been a township manager there, as well as a former reporter for The Mercury and, most recently, a police reporter for The Morning Call newspaper in Allentown.

"It was great to look up at the windows and see them in the windows waving," said Warner.

Warner said about 40 cars lined up in front of the Post Office High Street. Witnesses said the line of vehicles stretched west about a block, past Little Italy restaurant.

Photo by Evan Brandt
There was no shortage of signs to make the reason
for the drive-by plan to hospital workers.
"It was nice to see the cars lined up. It's great to have so many regular people willing to turn out and show they really appreciate what the hospital workers are doing,"
Warner said after the event had concluded.

The 7 p.m. drive-by was not the only treat for hospital workers Wednesday. At about 3 p.m., another group of five motorcycles and 20 vehicles, many of them muscle show cars, made a pass as well.

Photo by Rick Martin
A worker at Sanatoga Center shows her appreciation 
for the support.
That effort was organized by Mike Murphy, a Pottstown native, and also included the area's three nursing homes, where COVID-19 has hit particularly hard.

"We met up at the outlets in Limerick, keeping six feet apart and maintaining social distancing," said Murphy.

"Then we went over to Sanatoga Center, then cut over to Route 724 and visited Manatawny Manor, then over to the hospital and up Charlotte Street to ManorCare," Murphy said Wednesday evening.

Photo by Rick Martin
Motorcycles led the way for the
3 p.m. 
drive-by Wednesday.
"We had alerted them we were coming by and it really worked for the nursing homes because 3 p.m. is when they change shifts," said Murphy.
Photo by Rick Martin
Nurses wave
during the 3 p.m.

At Pottstown Hospital, the shifts change at 7 p.m.

"We wanted to hit the smaller facilities too, because they're all fighting the same fight," said Murphy.

"It's all very uplifting," said Chanelle Petro, who is working on Pottstown Hospital's third floor, which has been designated as the floor for coronavirus patients.

"My mom, my grandmother, my son and his girlfriend were all part of this," she said of the 7 p.m. event.

"It brings tears to my eyes," she said.

That is also true of the work Petro is doing.

Photo by Evan Brandt
From left, Danielle Davidheiser, Ebony Hall
and Lori Chestnut, enjoyed the support. 
"It's tough, emotionally, physically and mentally," she said.

"It really made me feel appreciated," said Ebony Hall, who works in housekeeping with Danielle Davidheiser and Lori Chestnut.

All three came out to see the 7 p.m. drive-by.

"We really appreciate all the support everyone is showing," said co-worker Lori Fox.

"It really made me smile," said Fox. "You just can't see it behind my mask."

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