The National Hockey League and Major League Baseball seasons may be on hold, but Louie and Fredbird, St. Louis sports team mascots, are busy saluting local health care workers on the front lines during COVID-19. Beginning in mid-April, the "Rise Up For Heroes" CARE-avan traveled through local neighborhoods, ending each evening at a different hospital combatting COVID-19.
Local sports legends like baseball Hall of Famer Ozzie Smith led the parade participants cheering for health care workers as well as essential workers in the area.
"What a great way to recognize our health care heroes," said Rich Liekweg, president and CEO of BJC HealthCare. "To have the Blues and the Cardinals and the broader St. Louis community come together and cheer on the work that we're doing is phenomenal." He added, "It's also an opportunity to recognize all the essential workers in the community, who are keeping things going as we fight this pandemic." And health care workers are grateful: "To see this outpouring of support from the community is amazing," said one nurse.