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City of Wheeling to honor frontline workers

WHEELING — As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to present challenges to everyday life in the Ohio Valley, the city of Wheeling is planning an event to pay tribute to essential workers who have helped fellow citizens get through these unprecedented times.

This week, Mayor Glenn Elliott announced that activities are being planned in recognition of Frontline Worker Appreciation Day in Wheeling on Aug. 3.

“It’s something that some members of the community have suggested that we do,” Elliott said. “It’s an appreciation day in the city for all of the frontline workers who throughout this pandemic have been showing up at work and putting themselves at risk when many of us have had the comfort of working from home and keeping ourselves safe.”

“A lot of folks have had to show up. We need to do something to recognize those folks.”

Specific events and activities for the Aug. 3 Frontline Workers Appreciation Day will be announced at a later date.

During this week’s city council meeting, the mayor read a proclamation to recognize the efforts of all the individuals across the community who have been serving on the frontlines during the global health crisis. The proclamation honors first responders, police officers, health care professionals and other essential workers such as warehouse workers, delivery workers, postal workers, construction workers, grocery store clerks, truck drivers, gas attendance and other public servants.

“By showing up to work in often dangerous conditions, they are helping to combat this global pandemic and to ensure that the health, well-being and safety of the citizens of Wheeling are intact,” the proclamation stated. “Putting their own lives at risk for the betterment of their fellow citizens and for our community, these individuals on the frontlines are the unsung heroes of our time who deserve our gratitude and respect.

Elliott said that oftentimes, these people work long hours to assist those in need and have been the primary line of defense when it comes to the ongoing effort to combat the coronavirus.

Business owners interested in supporting or helping with Frontline Worker Appreciation Day in any way are encourage to contact Wheeling City Clerk Brenda Delbert at 304-234-6401.

On a related note, council welcomed guest Cindy Wade, who works as a registered nurse with Wheeling Health Right, to Tuesday’s virtual council meeting as one of the community’s unsung heroes.

Wade was driving on Interstate 70 on June 21 when she exited near Perkins and came onto a scene where someone appeared to be performing CPR on a man who was unconscious in the road.

“She stopped, exited her vehicle, identified herself as a nurse and took over the situation,” Elliott explained. “The individual at that time was blue and with no discernible heartbeat.”

She began performing CPR on the individual before someone else arrived with an external defibrillator and emergency medical technicians arrived. The person was able to be resuscitated in the ambulance.

“She was told by the folks on site that without her intervention, he probably would have died,” Elliott said.

“We felt this was a great example of what makes us a great community of people like this that go above and beyond.”

The mayor said Wade was reluctant to be recognized for this action, noting that she was just doing her job. Elliott noted that council originally intended to present her a key to the city in-person during the meeting, but because of the COVID-19 pandemic and the city’s recent return to virtual meetings in the wake of increasing cases in the county, the key will be delivered to her.

“I was doing what I was trained to do,” Wade said. “I have not been in touch with the man, but I’m hoping I will be able to some day. I don’t know who it was, I just know he needed my assistance. I just want to shout out to all of the first responders, our fire and rescue teams in Wheeling are tops. They do this every day unrecognized, and I want to thank them for what they do.”

Kathie Brown, executive director of Wheeling Health Right, was also in virtual attendance at the meeting.

“Cindy is an amazing nurse,” Brown said. “We’re very proud that she works for us. Too often, we don’t recognize positive things that happen in our community, but it’s is so important.”

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