WASHINGTON, DC, Jan 10 – There’s plenty of bad news when it comes to the COVID pandemic and that, in itself, is enough to make you sick. It seems that every time you think things can’t get any worse, they do. We’ve had enough bad news to last a lifetime. So, read on, and take heart; it’s time for stories that might lift your spirits and bring on a great big smile.
The pandemic disrupted our lives, but it also brought out the best in many of us. Take Danny Goldberg, for example. He was 17 when COVID drastically changed the way we live. But instead of feeling sorry for himself, he felt sorry for the senior citizens in his town of Santa Barbara, CA. Like many cities and towns across the U.S., their population of senior citizens has been steadily growing. Many of them are in good health and able to cope one way or another with the protocols of the pandemic. But there are many more who are homebound due to the disease, and it is with them in mind that Goldberg had the idea of creating his Website, Zoomers to Boomers [ZTB] – that allows them to order groceries online.
It was an overnight success. Goldberg and his teen team of caring entrepreneurs launched ZTB shortly after the onset of the COVID crisis as an online way to provide groceries to elderly users. As word got around, the numbers of users skyrocketed—so much so that it allowed them to begin establishing local Zoomers to Boomers Websites in towns and cities across the country.
Danny Goldberg was inspired by the pandemic to create a not-for-profit organization, but Kent Taylor built his restaurant chain, Texas Roadhouse, for the purpose of making a profit. Nonetheless, Taylor proves that even the wealthy among us are capable of charitable endeavors. You might call him a rich guy with a heart of gold.
When the pandemic was in its early stages, Taylor realized that his business was going to slow down at the nearly 600 eateries in his Texas Roadhouse chain and his first thought was that it could jeopardize the livelihoods of his employees – tens of thousands of them. So he immediately stopped his own paychecks, totaling as much as a million bucks, in order to ensure the paychecks of the company’s workforce.
To boot, Taylor made a $5,000,000 contribution to his company’s employee emergency fund, which he established when he founded the company in 1993. It’s called Andy’s Outreach and, as he described it in an interview with the People Website, he set up the fund as a way “to take care of our people” in the event they need money for a funeral, an operation, or some other financial hardship.
He went on to say: “I’m 64 years old, and I call people under 55 kids. So I have 70,000 kids, and you want to take care of them. I relate it to my own personal family, and I want to take care of my family, is how I look at it.”
Sadly, Taylor passed away last March. It has been suggested that he might have come down with COVID and succumbed to the disease. His family issued a statement that explained, “After a battle with post-Covid related symptoms, including severe tinnitus, Kent Taylor took his own life this week. Kent battled and fought hard like the former track champion that he was, but the suffering that greatly intensified in recent days became unbearable … But in true Kent fashion, he always found a silver lining to help others. Most recently, he committed to fund a clinical study to help members of the military who also suffer with tinnitus.” It should be noted that tinnitus has been linked to COVID.