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Lincroft, NJ: Amy Dawn Gaffney a nurse at Jersey Shore Medical Center, lives in the Lincroft section of Middletown. She specializes in cardiovascular care, but during the pandemic, Gaffney reports to wherever she is needed most at the hospital. Waking up and leaving her home many mornings while it is still dark, and most of the neighborhood is still sleeping. She works non-stop to help on the frontlines of the COVID-19 crisis. This past Friday morning Gaffney was leaving for work, it was still dark outside as she walked to her car... What happened next can be seen in the video here:
"Thank you so much, thank you so much, I'm so touched... I can't believe you all woke up this morning to cheer me on...," Gaffney commented as her neighbors surprised her in the wee hours of the morning, with music, cheers of thanks, signs, noisemakers, flowers, ...and an enormous amount of kindness. You can see in the video how surprised and moved Gaffney is about the kindness bestowed on her. Her son gives her a big hug and hands her flowers. Neighbor Katy Elias presented Gaffney with a photo of her superimposed to show Gaffney standing on top of the earth, a bandaid over the area where NJ would be symbolizing Gaffney's nursing care in NJ.
Gaffney's mom Amy Papi comments, "Like everyone else, my stress level has been high and I can't stop worrying about my daughter working at the hospital. When she comes home she has to change her clothes in the garage, take a quick shower in the basement and then sleeps downstairs until she feels ok to then wear her mask and do what she needs to do as a mother at home. What her neighbors did for her is such a sign of how people are caring for each other. It was a touching and wonderful surprise. This act of kindness made my daughter feel so good and their support made her feel like leaving her family to help others is the right thing."