Bay Ridge walked the walk on Saturday, marching to show appreciation for those who’ve kept the city going during the pandemic.
The march, hosted by State Senator Andrew Gounardes and Councilmember Justin Brannan, went along the Shore Road Promenade from 80th Street to the 69th Street pier, where a vigil was held for essential workers and others who died of COVID-19.
“We know that COVID has devastated us,” Gounardes told the crowd. “We all know people who have gotten sick, died, lost their jobs, can’t put food on their table, are struggling to keep a roof over their head because of COVID … The fact that you are out here today, even though we are not through with the pandemic, to pause to take a moment to say thank you for all the workers to keep us going during our darkest days, is a testament to the strength of this community.”
“It’s important we remember the sacrifices made by us in the medical field as essential workers to remind ourselves we are part of the communities we serve,” said EMS worker Anthony Almojera. “I wish I was standing here today talking about what was as if it were a thing of the past, but as we are all aware, the fight against COVID is very much still a current issue that we have to face.”
“It’s so important to think about the darkest days of this pandemic when we had hundreds of people from the city and the state that were dying every single day,” said Brannan, who stressed that many essential workers became first responders. “These people didn’t sign up to be first responders or put their lives on the line, but they did because they got up and went to work knowing the risk that was out there and that they were putting their lives and their families in jeopardy in order to keep the city running.”
Assemblymember Nicole Malliotakis also attended to show support.
“Happy to join the #BayRidge community in saying thank you to our frontline workers for all they did during height of COVID & all they do every day,” she wrote on social media.