Cuomo touched by Kansas farmer’s gift of mask
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s eyes misted as he read a letter from a northeastern Kansas farmer who sent him a protective face mask to be used by a New York nurse or doctor, the Associated Press reported.
Cuomo read the entire letter at his daily COVID-19 pandemic briefing on Friday as an example of courage and generosity in dark times.
“I am a retired farmer hunkered down in N.E. Kansas with my wife who has but one lung and occasional problems with her remaining lung,” read the hand-written letter from Dennis Ruhnke, also signed by his wife, Sharon. “We are in our 70s now, and frankly I am afraid for her.”
Nevertheless, Ruhnke wrote, the couple had five of medically preferred respirator masks, and wished to give one to help New York’s battle against the virus.
“Enclosed find a solitary N-95 mask left over from my farming days. It has never been used,” the letter said. “If you could, could you please give this mask to a nurse or a doctor in your city.”
“You want to talk about a snapshot of humanity,” Cuomo said. “You have five masks, what do you do? Do you keep all five? Do you hide the five masks, do you keep them for yourself or others? No, you send one mask. You send one mask to New York for a doctor or nurse. How beautiful is that? How selfless is that? How giving is that?”