Emergency responders showed their appreciation for frontline workers in Minden and Haliburton working during the pandemic with drive-bys April 1 and 6.

Dubbed the “Light it Up” project, fire departments, OPP and paramedic services drove by the Minden hospital April 1 with lights flashing to send a thank you message. They did the same in Haliburton April 6, also visiting the two local grocery stores.

Dysart et al fire chief Mike Iles said it was inspired by displays of support being made elsewhere.

“It was a thank you to the community. Thank you to the service professionals, the community workers for all the support and hard work they’ve done during this very stressful time,” Iles said.

Haliburton County Paramedic Services deputy chief Jo-Ann Hendry said healthcare workers could not do their jobs without the support of hospital staff, delivery personnel and workers at pharmacies, convenience stores, grocery stores and gas stations.

“The brave individuals are our neighbours, relatives and friends. We fully support their efforts and wanted to show our appreciation,” Hendry said.

Haliburton Foodland owner Brad Park said his staff were very appreciative of the gesture.

“It’s nice to see all the frontline workers come together during these uncertain times to be honoured by our hardworking first responders. This shows the strength of our community,” Park said.

“We know we are in the early stages of this pandemic and it’s scary to think what is coming,” Haliburton Highlands Health Services director of care Michelle Douglas said. “To witness our front line staff standing outside of our hospital last evening as the OPP, Fire and EMS commended them for their bravery and commitment to our community was an emotional experience. All I can say is the feeling is mutual.”

Iles said they are not planning to duplicate the gesture as the situation is changing everyday and they do not want to encourage the public to group for drive-bys. But Iles said there was a great show of community support.

“People honking horns, people waving, it was very well done,” Iles said.

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