Rick Zamperin: There’s a lot of good shining through the darkness of COVID-19

Four time Olympic gold medalist Hayley Wickenheiser's call for medical supplies for front-line health care workers got an assist from actor Ryan Reynolds. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh

For the past several weeks we’ve been buried by the somber, sobering news about the coronavirus pandemic — so much so that I wouldn’t blame anyone for wanting to cry themselves to sleep.

As the number of deaths in Canada and around the world continue to rise and our front-line health-care workers and first responders put themselves in harm’s way, all while the COVID-19 outbreak lays waste to the global economy, we can’t help but get dragged down into what feels like a black hole of despair.

With all that being said, there is hope, as is written in one of my favourite passages in the Bible, The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. (John 1:5)

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The sports world has been darkened by this rapacious scourge — postponing events, throwing people out of work and leaving us without what has proven to be a welcoming distraction in times of turmoil.

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But when we look through the dense and heavy fog that is the coronavirus crisis, we see shining examples of goodness and the best of humanity.

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Bauer Hockey and Hamilton’s Kenesky Manufacturing are producing face shields for front-line health-care workers, CCM is donating half-a-million surgical masks, Formula One teams are producing ventilators and CPAP machines for patients, and New Balance is making cloth face masks.

The National Football League announced it will hold a COVID-19 fundraiser during its April 23-25 draft, with money going to organizations like the United Way, Salvation Army, Meals on Wheels and the American Red Cross.

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Toronto’s sports teams — the Maple Leafs, Raptors, Blue Jays, TFC and Argonauts — have created the Team Toronto Fund to provide assistance to arena/stadium and support staff who are facing financial hardship.

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Canadian hockey legend Hayley Wickenheiser, who is attending medical school in Calgary, asked her Twitter followers to donate N95 masks, gloves and gowns.

She suddenly found herself teamed up with Hollywood actor Ryan Reynolds and a newly-formed group called Conquer COVID-19 and has been collecting much needed equipment from around the GTA.

There are countless other examples of this type of collaboration, teamwork and goodwill, which makes me think about how amazing it is going to feel when we finally get the better of coronavirus.

It will truly be a time to celebrate all that is good in this world.


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