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From Louisiana with Love: Group Crosses State Line to Honor Mississippi Medical Staff

From Louisiana with Love: Group Crosses State Line to Honor Mississippi Medical Staff

Krewe for You brought meals to staff at Ochsner Hancock in Bay St. Louis, Mississippi on April 15, 2020. (Photo courtesy of Krewe for You)

The Coronavirus pandemic has touched most every American in some way. For some, there has been major loss: The loss of a loved one, the loss of a job, or the loss of peace-of-mind. For others, the effects have been more mild, consisting solely of staying at home more often than usual. Whatever our individual circumstances during the historic Covid-19 event, one thing’s for sure: We are all experiencing this thing together.

When people feel united in an experience, there’s often a sense of camaraderie that crosses all lines that either divide us — or simply separate us — during better times.

For people such as Christy Delgado — and the other members of her grassroots group, “Krewe for You” — even state lines have no meaning when it comes to uniting us all in thanks to the people on the front lines of battling the virus. 

Instead of just “talking the talk” about gratitude, Delgado and her friends decided to “walk the walk.” Recently, that “walk” became a trip over the Mississippi state line to Hancock County’s Bay St. Louis.

“A group of us worked together at Copeland’s Restaurant in Harvey, Louisiana for over ten years, and have stayed in touch through the past twenty-plus years,” Delgado said, in explaining the origins of the nonprofit group. “We were chatting when this all started, about how we could possibly help. One of the girls, Julie, mentioned (that) a doctor friend of hers said the hardest part was being alone with these patients without the support of their families. She said what they really needed was inspiration.”

Delgado felt she knew exactly what needed doing.

“I thought…why don’t we make a fortune cookie type treat for them, and put an inspirational message — or a positive scripture — to let them know that they will get through this.”

The group assembled what they called “Inspiration on the Geaux” bags for distribution to medical staff. Each included a granola bar, gatorade, mints and an inspirational message or quote from scripture.

“This became so meaningful. Then, they started to ask us if we could possibly deliver and donate some hot meals. As we started to receive donations, we also decided to pay it forward and purchase food from local small restaurants.”

Delgado said the group’s Facebook page began “blowing up with requests to show their hospitals some love, so we were raising funds and turning them into deliveries.”

Delgado said someone from Ochsner Hancock — located in Bay St. Louis — reached out to the group. It was nursing director, Shana Bounds.

“She asked us to please show some love to them in Mississippi,” Delgado explained. “We were happy to cross the state line, as these are our neighbors and we are all in this together.”

“Our motto is: NO front line hero left behind!” she added.

Delgado said they began to contact local southern Mississippi restaurants, which she said were “amazing to work with” and helped the group “work out a deal” to better serve the hospital staff. In particular, Delgado mentioned the cooperation of Huey Fouquet of Dat Kitchen Too (located in Waveland) and Roger Estopinal, Jr. of Roger’s Sports Bar & Grill (located in Bay St. Louis).

Visiting The Bay on April 15 was apparently such a good experience, Krewe For You plans to make it a regular thing. 

“We will now dedicate every Wednesday to Mississippi,” Delgado said, indicating the recipients won’t be limited to medical staff. Possibilities include “all frontline businesses,” and might include banks, nursing homes, clinics, or other places where essential workers face new stresses due to Covid-19.

About The Author

Kara Bachman

Kara Bachman is a Managing Editor for Parents & Kids. She's also a book editor, former newspaper reporter, and is author of the humor essay collection, "Kissing the Crisis," which deals with the zanier aspects of parenting, relationships and turning 40. She's read her work on NPR radio and over 1,500 items have appeared in dozens of literary and commercial publications, including The Writer, The Erma Bombeck Writers' Workshop, the New Orleans Times-Picayune and Nola.com, Dogster, Mississippi Magazine, American Fitness and many more. She's a New Orleans native, but lived for over a dozen years on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, including during 2005 when her house was flooded by Hurricane Katrina. She's a mom to two teenagers.

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