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Leon Bibb: The wait is almost over

As vaccination numbers climb, we inch closer to those we have missed so much.

CLEVELAND — They are images from around the world. And through the ages. Each different from the next although a common thread of family is woven through them all.  

Family – the building block of culture, no matter where.

For the last year, so many families have struggled. The pandemic has forced members to  often physically separate, yet emotionally connect. With family and friends, the year has been one of holding hands long distance.  

But then came the shot felt around the world, the long-sought vaccine. Because of it slowly grew small reunions of families and friends. Not fully a normal world yet, but there are hopes that that which separated family and friends will become only a a past memory.  

I view family as kinfolk and loved ones. Let's add friends in there too, for they are also part of a cherished circle. Family can be whatever each of us thinks of it. In many ways, I believe we are all part of a world family. Genealogy likens family to branches of a tree. Branches stretched in different directions yet from the same tree root structure.  

For the last year family branches have been whipped by a virus's ill winds which separated the family. Yet at the same time although the storm tossed the tree branches, the tree tried to hold in the wind, calling on its root structure. The family tree is weathering the storm, hoping for long-awaited reunions of family members and friends.  

We are not fully there yet, but hope is on the horizon.   

People in general long for heartfelt embraces and hugs and handshakes. It's part of our human need. Hope is we cautiously increase those human touches in the reunions of our family tree. The reunions give us a stability like that of any planted tree with strong branches which even in stiff winds remain connected to each other.     

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Editor's Note: The below story aired on March 18, 2021