Tuesday’s regular meeting of the Cushing Lions Club was special as those memories from just a couple of months ago crept back in when we all parked in the parking lots of Hillcrest Hospital at 7 pm honking and flashing our lights for those brave employees that were inside as the first defense of COVID-19 when it was the scariest of times. Though Cushing was, and is, lucky that we are not targeted as a highly impacted community as many other areas are.
Regardless, the employees that reported to work did not know what was ahead of them only that their profession requires a commitment beyond that of many other jobs. Leaving their families daily not knowing if they will be coming home carrying a virus. Having to dress and undress in a different manner.
When inviting our guest Kerri Marks of Hillcrest Hospital I asked her to choose an employee that she thought stood out during these times and she brought Jennifer Moore who is an ER manager with 12 plus years of experience. Jennifer worked outside our area but last October moved to Cushing and she is happy in her position. Jennifer explained to us that when it was time to ramp up, our city manager Terry Brannon went beyond the call of duty to make sure they were prepared for a possible overflow of patients by opening a closed building and preparing it as a triage facility. Having the city install crosswalks and being sure Cushing would receive the best care. The current conditions at the hospital are easing as strict visiting rules have been lifted but still with limitations. Both guests informed us that we must be prepared for the fall flu season as it will be hard to distinguish between COVID-19 and the flu. They recommend the flu shot at the earliest time.
Questions were answered about the pros and cons of getting the shot and both said getting the shot is your best defense. It was a true honor for us to have these two guests take time to answer our questions. The Cushing Lions meet every Tuesday at about 11:45 to have lunch at the Steer Inn on Main Street in Cushing with the meeting starting at 12:15. We invite anyone that believes in our motto, “We Serve”, to join us any Tuesday.
In a side note, our own Cushing Lion Tom Cummings was honored by Lions International at a recent convention for Tom’s endless work for “Kids Sight”, a program that leads the industry in early detection of abnormal eye conditions affecting School age children. Tom leads volunteer teams to schools and functions all around NE and Central Oklahoma to run these tests. Through Tom’s strong willed efforts, Oklahoma is very close to allowing this testing to be equal to or replace the old eye chart method allowing a much larger audience partake in this remarkably fast, accurate, and easy testing.