As the Thanksgiving holiday approaches, I want to thank each and every one of you and your families for your tremendous effort and sacrifice over the past 8 months. We have the burden, and the benefit in a way, of being part of the essential rail industry. Our services became more important than ever when this virus struck to help keep the supply chain running to support all Americans. Each of you took this seriously and did what was needed to ensure we had a safe, healthy team and more than met the challenge. You should be very proud of your work.
I also know this holiday season is going to be very different for you. You simply will not be able to do many of the traditional things you have done before that make the holidays so special. However, I find it helpful to think about it this way: although I cannot be with all of my family
and friends, and cannot do all the things I normally do, I am going to make the most if it and enjoy what the holidays are all about and look forward to celebrating normally next year. If you think about it, a year is a very short time in the grand scheme of things, and I am confident next year we will be back to normal. Who knows, you may even find a new “tradition” that will come from this strange year.
You will probably recognize this slogan as the message of an ad campaign by the liquor industry, but it is appropriate this year on more than just an alcohol consumption level. We must be smart right now. Experts say most of the current outbreak is the result of people letting their guard down the last few months and not following the safe practices of social distancing and wearing a mask. Whether you decide to celebrate this Thanksgiving alone, or with a few family members or friends, keep these thoughts in mind:
• Follow your local guidelines with respect to the size of group gatherings allowed.
• Celebrate outdoor if you are fortunate enough to live in a warm part of the country or can brave the cold. Be creative-many people in colder climates are gathering in their garage or with
heaters on the patio this year. Well ventilated areas and spaced out seating is essential.
• Keep the time together shorter than normal to reduce exposure and insist that your family members and friends be responsible in all respects.
Please, remain vigilant over this holiday week so we can all return safely next week. Happy Thanksgiving
- Joseph F. Schieszler, Jr., CEO