WASHINGTON, DC - MARCH 12: Signs outside read that the NHL Season has been suspended after the Detroit Red Wings against the Washington Capitals game was postponed due to the coronavirus at Capital One Arena on March 12, 2020 in Washington, DC. Today the NHL announced is has suspended their season due to the uncertainty of the coronavirus (COVID-19) with hopes of returning. The NHL currently joins the NBA, MLS, as well as, other sporting events and leagues around the world suspending play because of the coronavirus outbreak.
(Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

We live in a world that is now defined by words like social distancing, quarantine, stay home, and the depressing ventilator.

In a time when the world is looking for optimism, there are reasons for hope.

Athletes, manufacturers, and others from the sports world have stepped up in many ways to help all of us get through this terrible time in our lives. We need something to lift our spirits, to know everything will be alright and to somehow see the light at the end of the tunnel.

Here are just some of the great things that players have done to help people recover from coronavirus. They range from food drives to donations to making a child smile.

In the end, these acts of kindness give this writer hope that we will indeed be alright.

New York Rangers fan favorite Henrik Lundqvist and his wife Therese donated $100,000 through Foundation HLF to support the FoodBank4NYC. The King and his Henrik Lundqvist Foundation have always looked out for the underprivileged. His efforts again will help so many who go hungry because of this virus.

New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees went even further then Lundqvist.

Through his Instagram account, Brees let the state of Louisiana know how he plans to help with a $5 million donation.

“Brittany and I are committing $5,000,000 to the State of Louisiana in 2020. The priority now is helping our communities get through this tough time,” Brees’ Instagram post read.

“After considerable research and conversations with local organizations, we will be mobilizing our partnerships with Second Harvest Food Bank, Ochsner Health Systems, Walk-Ons, Jimmy Johns, Smalls Sliders and Waitr to prepare and deliver over 10,000 meals per day throughout Louisiana for as long as it takes to children on meal programs, seniors, and families in need. Let’s all do our part, maintain hope, and get through this together.”

Johnathan Toews granted a birthday wish to a seven-year-old who had plans to celebrate his birthday watching the Blackhawks play at the United Center. The game was postponed due to coronavirus, but the Hawks player made sure Declan will get to see a game soon.

“Hey Declan, it’s your buddy Jonathan Toews from the Blackhawks here,” Toews said via Twitter. “Just wanted to wish you a happy seventh birthday. We know you’re missing your hockey games and your sports and school, so consider it a raincheck, buddy. We’ll see you at the United Center soon, alright? So happy birthday, once again.”

Toews also donated $100,000 to help combat COVID-19.

Sports companies have also come to the rescue. Bauer, known for making helmet cages, skates, and other hockey gear, put the regular business on hold and began manufacturing face shields to be used by medical personnel in hospitals.

Fanatics also wanted to help the heroes who are fighting this disease. The manufacture of sports apparel and MLB jerseys will stop so the factory can begin making the much-needed PPE for the medical community. They will be producing masks and surgical aprons. The company is based out of Pennsylvania which is where their first donation will go with stops in New York and New Jersey to follow.

The big names are not the only ones who are trying to do their part to help. Rangers blogger and apparel manufacturer Blue York made T-shirts and hoodies with “New York Strong” across the front. They announced the 100% of the profits for these shirts would be donated to City Meals on Wheels.

In a time of working from home, online education, and the anxiety of being in the middle of what many consider to be an invisible enemy, its reassuring to know there are so many people in the sports world who are willing to put finances and contracts aside to help others.

There is only one way I can end this important story. The Utica Comets started a campaign last week, a hashtag on a shirt that says it all. I hope all of you will use Utica’s new motto.

#PuckTheVirus

Couldn’t have said it any better. Be safe everyone. We will beat this!

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