Did you lose a loved one to COVID-19? This is your chance to share that person’s story with the world
Maybe it was when the pandemic first arrived in the United States, or perhaps it only happened in recent weeks or months. But if you lost a friend or family member to COVID-19, and you’d like to memorialize that person’s legacy, we invite you to share more.
200+ Duval County students, faculty tested positive for COVID-19 during summer programs
Duval County students and staff taking part in summer activities were not spared the scourge of COVID-19, as more than 200 tested positive between June 3 and July 28, according to data provided by Duval County Public Schools (DCPS).
Here’s why restaurant workers say they left the industry during the pandemic & won’t be back
News4Jax asked viewers currently in or fresh out of the restaurant industry their thoughts on how the environment has changed and what could drive unemployed people to pick other jobs besides those in the food industry.
7 diseases that vaccines have all but eliminated in the U.S.
First- and second-graders line up for Salk Polio vaccine shots on April 23, 1955. Regardless of where anyone stands on the matter, we know that vaccinations have been protecting us from diseases for decades. In 1921, the United States recorded 206,000 cases, which resulted in 15,520 deaths, according to the History of Vaccines website. According to the CDC, polio was once one of the most feared diseases in the U.S. Since 1979, there have been no polio cases that originated in the U.S.
What’s at the top of your post-pandemic bucket list? Fill us in
To think of a world in which there’s no longer a COVID-19 pandemic. With vaccines now rolling out all over the country, as well as becoming available to more and more people, some have begun to talk about a post-pandemic life -- words we couldn’t imagine uttering (much less living) just a few months ago. Shall we go so far as to say there’s light at the end of the tunnel? So now we ask: What is at the top of your bucket list, if you will, post-pandemic? Maybe you’re dying to get back to work in person with your colleagues or classmates.
What’s the last photo you took before the pandemic?
The last photo on her phone before the pandemic declaration was taken at 4:32 p.m. March 10. “We are here having a beer at Tubala Rasa Brewing Company,” Blanton said of his last pre-pandemic image. SLIDESHOW: Here are our last memories before our lives changed🗓 3.11.20📸 9:22 AM - A morning walk. Bob Ellis, the vice president and general manager of WJXT/WCWJ, said his last photo before the pandemic hit was from a vacation at the beach with his family. She said it was the last picture she took on her phone before we all started wearing masks in public.
Mayor to announce new federal assistance for Jacksonville residents hurting from pandemic
The number of deaths in the U.S. with patients who tested positive for coronavirus approaches half a million. As the pandemic continues to hurt families both medically and financially, there is at least some financial assistance heading to Jacksonville. While people are getting vaccinated, the U.S.’s leading infectious disease expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci, speculates Americans could be still wearing masks into 2022. “It’s nothing like we’ve ever been through in the last 102 years since the 1918 influenza pandemic,” Fauci said. On the local front, some good news for many families in Jacksonville as Mayor Lenny Curry puts out this announcement:Ad“Monday at noon, I will announce a new round of federal funding for rent and utility assistance for Jacksonville residents who meet certain federal qualifications.
Did you lose a loved one to COVID-19? Share their story and spirit with us
It almost seems impossible, but we’ve been living with COVID-19 in our lives for almost a year, and tragically, some of us have lost grandparents, parents, siblings and friends due to this unforgiving virus. As the United States is approaching 500,000 deaths since early 2020, it seems that many of us have experienced a COVID-related loss. So, in honor of your loved one’s memory, we’re asking that you share a photo of them and tell us their story. We’ve all dealt with grief in our lives, but losing a loved one to the COVID-19 pandemic is especially hard, since we all can’t celebrate their lives like we normally would. Hopefully sharing your loved ones with others virtually can bring you the tiniest bit of comfort in these uncertain times.
Choosing a diet to shed pandemic weight gain
Nearly half of Americans say they’ve gained weight during the pandemic, according to a recent survey. AdThen, there’s the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension, or DASH, diet – which focuses on foods to help lower blood pressure. And there’s also a newer combination of the two called the Mediterranean-DASH Intervention for Neurodegenerative Delay, or MIND diet. “That diet has been shown, with rigorous adherence, to reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s and dementia by about 53%, so this is really a brain boosting diet,” said Kirkpatrick. If you’re having trouble deciding what diet is right for you, talk to your healthcare provider or enlist the help of a dietician.
Coronavirus relief continues for housing and student loans
As the Coronavirus pandemic continues, so does its financial impact. For people who need help with rent or mortgage payments, or have student loans, there may be some good news about the federal relief response. The Federal Housing Finance Agency tells you how to find out if your mortgage is federally backed. AdStudent Loan Borrowers — For those federal student loans that are covered, the U.S. Department of Education has automatically paused payments through Sept. 30, 2021. Here are some ways to protect yourself:If you spot a scam, report it to the Federal Trade Commission at ReportFraud.ftc.gov.
Gov. DeSantis adamant on not shutting Florida down as COVID-19 variants increase
Ron DeSantis called President Joe Biden a “lockdowner” when he was asked about a domestic travel ban report on Fox News. He said lockdowns won’t help with the increase of COVID-19 cases, and cases of the new variant. DeSantis said he doesn’t agree with the reports that said the Biden administration will place a domestic travel ban on certain states including Florida. This despite a White House spokesperson saying as recently as Thursday that there are currently no bans of domestic travel being considered. Lockdowns don’t work.
Quarantine brings some couples closer together
A recent survey shows some couples feel the quarantine has actually brought them closer together. There were many predictions that quarantine was going to have a negative impact on relationships and lead to more break ups and divorces. But, a recent survey shows some couples feel it actually brought them closer together. “In a review of over 43 different studies and 11,000 couples interviewed, the number one factor in keeping couples together, and close, is expressing appreciation of your significant other,” said Dr. Albers. It can be small or something that is really significant to who they are.”If you find yourself having relationship troubles, Dr. Albers encourages reaching out to a couples counselor.
With 1 million Floridians vaccinated, where do COVID-19 cases stand?
In the last week, we saw thousands of people in our area get the COVID-19 vaccine, despite a rising number of cases of the virus. Do you remember when the state hit 1 million cases on Dec. 1? Just over 11,000 new cases were reported Sunday, but Florida also surpassed a million people vaccinated on Sunday. With nearly 75,000 cases in Duval, and over 50,000 people vaccinated, the percent positivity for new cases is at 9.3%. Some people asked why you’re doing some of the counties you’re doing; there’s some counties that have really big health infrastructure, Orlando, Jacksonville, has big infrastructure, a lot of hospitals.
Second phase of COVID-19 vaccine distribution being planned
Police, firefighters, teachers and grocery workers will be next in line for a COVID-19 vaccine. The CDC advisory panel made the decision today for the second phase of distribution. Thousands of doses have been distributed across the county trying to fight the COVID-19 vaccine. The CDC Sunday said firefighters, teachers, police and grocery workers will be next, but can these employers force their employees to get the vaccine? He said the vaccine would also have to be made available to the public before an employer can require employees to get it.
Push to get COVID-19 vaccine distributed underway
This comes after the FDA granted emergency use authorization for Pfizer and Bio-N-Tech’s vaccine on Friday. This is just part of an overall plan to distribute 40 million vaccine doses by the end of the year. The focus will then be on how soon the U.S. can get to what is called herd immunity among the population. “So we need to have immunized about 75% or 80% of the U.S. population before herd immunity can really be established. Even after the first few million doses of the vaccine are administered, you can still expect pushes for social distancing and mask wearing until herd immunity is achieved.
It’s official: Pets are good for mental health -- an expert explains why
Dr. Lori Vallelunga, a clinical psychologist at Baptist Behavioral Health, spoke with McPherson and answered a few questions about how pets can boost our mental health. Can simply owning a pet benefit your mental health? Pets have even been shown to help people manage long-term mental health conditions like chronic depression or bipolar disorder. Animals even help us socially, facilitating meeting new people and aiding in building social networks and friendships.”Are pets especially helpful for mental health during the coronavirus pandemic? Pets ranging from fish to guinea pigs have been studied and have been found to offer benefits to our mental health.
‘Pandemic’ picked as 2020 word of the year by Dictionary.com
Over time, we were pandemic baking and pandemic dating and rescuing pandemic puppies from shelters. All of which led Dictionary.com on Monday to declare “pandemic” its 2020 word of the year. For about half the year, it was in the top 10% of all our lookups.”Another dictionary, Merriam-Webster, also selected pandemic as its word of the year earlier Monday. Kelly said pandemic beat out routine lookups usually intended to sort more mundane matters, such as the differences between “to, two and too.”“That's significant,” Kelly emphasized. The pandemic as an event created a new language for a new normal.”Lexicographers often factor out routine lookups when evaluating word trends.
When will we see Thanksgiving’s impact on Florida’s COVID-19 cases?
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Over the last two days, Florida saw an increase of 17,344 COVID-19 cases and the state could reach one million cases by Monday. The pandemic didn’t keep people from traveling for the holiday and some weren’t interested in getting tested beforehand to check if visiting family was wise. Dr. Reza said this holiday will expose thousands more cases in the coming weeks. During that time, he says you should quarantine, even if you know a family member tested positive after the holiday. We asked News4Jax viewers if they planned on getting tested after traveling for the holiday.
6 ways to make virtual Thanksgiving entertaining for everyone
With many medical experts urging Americans to make this year’s Thanksgiving scaled down, many of us will probably only see people in our “bubble,” so holiday is going to feel a little bit different. Thanks to technology, you can still gather with your extended family.
I survived COVID-19, but my sense of smell didn’t. This is what it’s been like.
If you have survived COVID-19 and you’ve managed to keep your sense of smell (or quickly get it back), so happy for you, too -- truly. Getting sickWhat’s strange is that I didn’t notice my sense of smell was gone until I had already gotten over being sick. Losing my sense of smellWhat’s kind of funny is that I didn’t realize I had lost my sense of smell until I was cleaning my house one night. In this group, I learned of people who had become infected with COVID-19 in the earlier part of the year who still haven’t regained their sense of smell. Did you survive COVID-19 and still haven’t regained your sense of smell?
Did you meet your significant other and fall in love during the pandemic? We want to hear your story
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: It’s ... been quite a year. But we all know, too, that there has been plenty of good that’s come out of this year. That includes all the people who have found love. Author’s note: As someone who is married, the dating scene doesn’t cross my mind a lot, but I’ve wondered: How do people meet others, romantically, during such a strange time? If you’ve gone through this during a pandemic, I’d love to hear your story, if you’re willing to share.
Mark Wahlberg donates 1.3 million face masks to students, teachers in Lakeland and other US cities
LAKELAND, Fla. – Actor Mark Wahlberg is aiding students and teachers across the nation in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic, including those in Lakeland, Florida. KSAT reports that Wahlberg’s activewear brand Performance Inspired recently partnered with the active lifestyle brand LifeToGo to donate 1.3 million disposable face masks to teachers and students across the nation, as announced in a press release. Some areas have already received the donated 3-ply masks, including some students and teachers in San Antonio, the release said. Other places where donated masks have been received include Bentonville (AR), Boise (ID), Chicago (Ill.), Cincinnati (Ohio), Grand Rapids (MI), Minneapolis (MN), Portland (OR), Quincy (MA), Rochester (NY), Salisbury (NC), San Antonio (TX), and Woonsocket (RI). Wahlberg posted a video message on social media thanking essential workers and teachers as they combat the pandemic.
11 times we were reminded there is good, despite the dud of a year we’ve had
Despite the fact that the entire world has been living through a pandemic, there has been a lot of good happening, and we have managed to find quite a bit of it. There are so many people doing good things, but we’ll start by sharing these 11 stories with you. It was some time before the two were reunited, but when they did, “they were laughing like teenagers.”Want to read more? Community raises $300K for injured, retired Army veteran’s new smart home: ‘Pam will never be alone’U.S. Army Sgt. “And I didn’t want to put anyone in danger.”Then, Knowles found out about some special face coverings for the deaf.
With no sense of smell post-COVID-19, this woman believes a ‘guardian angel’ alerted her to a gas leak in her home
Linda Mcgrath said missing sense of smell nearly cost her her life after a gas leak sprung in her Livonia, Michigan, home, about five months after her coronavirus diagnosis. She reached out to us in response to an article we previously published about COVID-19-related smell loss. “I had a guardian angel a couple of weeks ago when I heard a hissing noise and realized I had a gas leak." When her son arrived, it was clear Mcgrath didn’t know the extent of the leak, because she never smelled a thing. A few days later, the woman said, a house nearby in Livonia blew up from a gas leak, confirming how dangerous Mcgrath’s situation could have been.
Prosecutors & public defenders face budget cuts amid COVID-19 backlog
“We had been getting in a good area as far as pending felony cases,” Public Defender Charlie Cofer said. State attorneys, lawyers and public defenders worked to resolve cases through plea deals and through virtual court hearings. Besides a growing caseload, the Public Defender’s Office and State Attorney’s Office were required to submit plans to the state in August to show what their operations might look like with significant budget cuts in place. The State Attorney’s Office was asked to detail the impact of an 8.5 percent budget reduction for the next fiscal year. The State Attorney’s Office plans to work with lawmakers and others to preserve current funding levels.
RIP pre-COVID-19 normal: Dad recreates ‘outings’ for daughter, and it’s the sweetest
In the first video Finney posted of these “outings,” she starts by saying, “Since we can’t go to the movie theater right now, my dad decided to bring the movie theater to us. (more on instagram @wheres_mia) ♬ original sound - miafinneyFollow “Something Good” on Facebook and YouTube! People who commented seem to really admire Finney’s dad, and the lengths he went to reinvent going to the movie theater for her. The video got comments like:“Your dad is the sweetest man in the world.”“I’m allergic to kindness. In another video, Finney had been craving some Cold Stone Creamery ice cream, so you know they had to recreate it.
Wearing a creative or fun face mask? We want to see
This time last year, we were beginning to talk about what kinds of fun costumes and masks we might wear for Halloween. Nowadays, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues, masks are an every day, everywhere kind of thing. In an effort to fight the spread of the coronavirus, masks have been mandated for wear in plenty of places, so perhaps your mask has become second nature. That not only makes it a little more fun for those wearing the masks, but for us who are out people-watching (and unable to actually see people’s faces). And perhaps you just might give some others some fun ideas to work with.
Longing for a luau? Hawaii now requires travelers to fill out a digital health application before arriving
The state of Hawaii recently launched the digital app so that travelers could provide their required health information before they arrive at the airport, speeding up the process. Travelers previously were required to fill out the same forms, but on paper, when they arrived in Hawaii. Now, the state has two different types of digital forms: One each for inter-island travel and trans-pacific travel. Upon providing health information at least one day before departure, travelers will receive a QR code that an airport screener will scan when they arrive. For the time being, travelers must check into the Safe Travels Hawaii website each day for health check-ins for the duration of their quarantine.
Are your kids doing school virtually? We want to see what your home classroom looks like
Whether your children have already begun their school year or you’re still preparing, due to delays, there are many who are choosing to keep their kids home to learn as the coronavirus pandemic rages on. Parents are doing their best to adapt, and we applaud every parent for the decision they’re making -- regardless of what that is. But for those who are keeping kids home for virtual learning, we want to see exactly how you’re adapting. What does the “classroom” you’ve created look like? We’d love to see what kinds of ideas parents have come up with, and we have a feeling other parents might appreciate some good ideas, too.
Never golfed, and not sure where to start? 11 notes that will make you feel more at ease
Are you ever flipping around on TV and you come across some sort of golf tournament? Golf looks pretty fun, and somewhat less strenuous than some of the other professional sports. Plus, golfing seems like an enjoyable group activity or a bucket-list item for a scenic vacation.
Survived COVID-19? Here’s what it’s like to donate plasma, and why it’s so crucial
Health experts have identified that plasma received from someone who has survived COVID-19 can be extremely beneficial to others who may contract the virus. Convalescent plasma is the liquid part of blood that is collected from patients who have recovered from COVID-19, according to the FDA. By taking your weight, they will know how much plasma you are eligible to donate. Donating without COVID-19 diagnosisPerhaps you haven’t been diagnosed with COVID-19, but you still want to help donate blood or plasma. Click here to learn more about plasma donation.
This time can be HARD. So tell us: Do you feel like you’re cracking?
Sure, some things have returned to a state of “normal,” or at least, as normal as can be expected. As the author of this story, and someone who writes/edits from home full-time while juggling toddlers and a recent out-of-state move, I usually just tell people I’m fine, when they ask. Tell us what you’re feeling. Loading…One final thing: It might feel good to fill out our form and vent a little bit (please -- I hope you do! ), but if you’re struggling or dealing with anything related to your mental health, or you’re feeling more than just “not OK,” please reach out to a trusted friend, family member or therapist.
Airline CEO: If you insist on not wearing a mask, we’ll insist you not fly with us -- from here on out
Delta Air Lines CEO Ed Bastian has put out what some are calling an aggressive enforcement of mask-wearing on the company’s flights. ”If you board the plane and you insist on not wearing your mask, we will insist that you don’t fly Delta into the future,” Bastian told Today in an interview Wednesday. The CEO said the stance is one he’s taking in order to keep crew and passengers safe during the pandemic. As the coronavirus pandemic continues, Delta flights have been booked to 60% of their capacity, Today reported after speaking with Bastian. “We’ve had some customers indicate that they have (an) underlying condition that makes wearing a mask dangerous for them,” Bastian said.
This mom says virtual learning is not working for her son with Down syndrome. She has some ideas on how to flip the system.
She explained that distance learning for her son Julian, who recently finished fourth grade at a public school in Maryland, was a disaster. At Julian’s school, he received the Individualized Education Program, which is federally mandated for students with special needs. Wohl suggests new distance learning is presenting an opportunity to shift norms to benefit students with disabilities, specifically those who have communication difficulties or are nonspeaking. In-person classrooms have grown to be rather large in recent years, but that can leave students with disabilities feeling overwhelmed. Wohl suggests that smaller groups can give students better access to their curriculum at their own pace, as well as social inclusion.