First responders signed up to save lives, as in this fire in Langley City last year. Now they’re dealing with a new kind of threat to their safety. (Langley Advance Times files)

First responders signed up to save lives, as in this fire in Langley City last year. Now they’re dealing with a new kind of threat to their safety. (Langley Advance Times files)

Our View: Coronavirus reveals new kind of bravery in first responders

Even those who signed up to save lives and risk their own weren’t expecting this

When you start training to be a nurse or a doctor, you expect long hours and a tough, emotionally demanding job.

You don’t expect to find yourself the key figure in the struggle to save lives amid the worst worldwide pandemic in a century.

All our first responders and essential workers have taken on more than they could possibly have expected when they began their careers – even if their careers began in January of this year.

Medical professionals, police and firefighters, care aids, and their unexpected essential-worker comrades who are checking out groceries, driving trucks, delivering food, and keeping the lights on and the water flowing in our pipes, have been thrust into danger.

Around Langley and far beyond, there are tributes to them, large and small. Messages of support chalked on fences and across suburban cul-de-sacs. Colourful paper notes taped to the inside of windows. Banging of pots and pans and applause at the 7 p.m. shift change.

We often celebrate our first responders, people who put their lives on the line arresting criminals, fighting fires, or saving lives.

But we should remember, while many of them expected an occupation with more danger than most, few of them expected this. It is more than was asked of them.

Yet they have stepped up, as have so many others to support them, and to support our community.

In response to these people putting themselves on the line, the rest of us must keep doing our part, small as it is in comparison.

We must keep physically distancing, keep avoiding gatherings, keep the cabin fever many of us are feeling from overwhelming our better judgment.

We are all in this together. But some of us – our first responders and essential workers – are the ones who could pay the price if we don’t do our part.

– M.C.

CoronavirusDoctorsEditorialsLangleyLangley RCMPnurse

Just Posted

The Langley Centennial Museum is hoping the public can help identify people in this photo from the Sperling Church Sunday School. (Langley Township photo)
Did you attend Sperling Church Sunday School in Langley?

Local residents can help ID people in historic local photos and preserve Langley history

Higher sales of cannabis helped Canadian farmers come out in the green. (Black Press Media File)
Cannabis processing could start shop in North Langley

Company is the latest to work on industrial operations locally

Langley Quilters Guild helped honour two long-time members of the Langley Memorial Hospital Auxiliary, including Pat Walker (left), with “beautiful quilts” to express appreciation for their years of service to the non-profit. Her quilt was presented by Nuala Adderley (right), the guild vice-president. (Special to Langley Advance Times)
Giving everlasting thanks to devoted Langley volunteers

Quilts given to two women who donate more than 30+ years each to Langley Memorial Hospital Auxiliary

Nixon Mahovlic, 8, was inspired by kindness week at Fort Langley Elementary so he set out to collect bottles to raise money for a local family in need. (Steve Mahovlic/Special to Langley Advance Times)
Daily confirmed COVID-19 cases reported to B.C. public health, seven-day rolling average in white, to May 12, 2021. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C. preparing ‘Restart 2.0’ from COVID-19 as June approaches

Daily infections fall below 500 Friday, down to 387 in hospital

The Independent Investigations Office of BC (IIO) (File Photo)
Police watchdog investigating after man found dead in Surrey following a wellness check

IIO says officers ‘reportedly spoke to a man at the home before departing’

On Friday, May 14 at Meadow Gardens Golf Club in Pitt Meadows, Michael Caan joined a very elite club of golfers who have shot under 60 (Instagram)
Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Crowds at English Bay were blasted with a large beam of light from an RCMP Air-1 helicopter on Friday, May 14. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Marc Grandmaison
Police enlist RCMP helicopter to disperse thousands crowded on Vancouver beach

On Friday night, police were witness to ‘several thousand people staying well into the evening’

People shop in Chinatown in Vancouver on Friday, February 5, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Vancouver community leaders call for action following 717% rise in anti-Asian hate crimes

‘The alarming rise of anti-Asian hate in Canada and south of the border shows Asians have not been fully accepted in North America,’ says Carol Lee

Sinikka Gay Elliott was reported missing on Salt Spring Island on Wednesday, May 12. (Courtesty Salt Spring RCMP)
Body of UBC professor found on Salt Spring Island, no foul play suspected

Sinikka Elliott taught sociology at the university

The first Black judge named to the BC Supreme Court, Selwyn Romilly, was handcuffed at 9:15 a.m. May 14 while walking along the seawall. (YouTube/Screen grab)
Police apologize after wrongly arresting B.C.’s first Black Supreme Court Justice

At 81 years old, the retired judge was handcuffed in public while out for a walk Friday morning

Surrey RCMP in the 4900-block of 148th Street, a short road just off of King George Boulevard, on May 15, 2021 after a male was allegedly assaulted with a “pipe-like” weapon that morning. (Photo: Shane MacKichan)
Surrey RCMP investigating after person reportedly injured with ‘pipe-like’ weapon

Police investigating incident in the 4900-block of 148th Street

Most Read