Starting the road to recovery on this Fourth of July

The pandemic may be over, but COVID-19 remains among us so we must be careful
Sammy Shelor brings his banjo to an outdoor show on July 4th weekend behind the Floyd Country Store.

The start of July also kicks off what most of us hope is the start of a return to normalcy after the COVID-19 pandemic that infected more than 183 million people worldwide and killed 3,965,323 as of this Thursday morning.

The death toll will soon top 4 million around the globe. More than 620,000 of those deaths came in the United States and 11,419 in Virginia.

Indoor music events are returning throughout our area, and the internationally-acclaimed Friday Night Jamboree is set to return indoors on July 9th. For this July 4th weekend, Sammy Shelor headlines a gathering of bluegrass friend in an outdoor concert in the store’s backyard, starting at 7:30 p.m.

Fireworks also return this Fourth weekend in Floyd.

The daily report by the Virginia Department of Health, however, shows COVID-19 remains among us. The Old Dominion had 224 new cases, 52 new hospitalizations and seven deaths, including one in Roanoke.

Roanoke County had four new cases. So did Patrick County.

Floyd County has not reported any new cases in more than a week but has had 885 since the pandemic started with 31 hospitalized and 22 deaths.

As we celebrate the Fourth of July this weekend, let’s also remember our first responders, medical professionals and others who fought the virus against incredible odds. While many have completed their vaccinations, too many others have not. They remain a risk to themselves, their family and others around them.

Enjoy the Fourth, but be careful and safe out there.