The world as we know it has changed, and cities, states and countries are taking unprecedented steps to protect those around us.
As I write this, businesses are closing, parents are teaching at home, tens of thousands of Texans, including many of our friends and neighbors are wondering where their next paycheck will come from.
Worst of all, thousands and thousands of people are fighting an invisible virus that is killing by the day.
To combat COVID-19, we are taking steps no one could have imagined. Our economy is being shut down in an effort to combat the coronavirus and so many businesses we have grown to love and hanging in the balance.
In Del Rio, we are a little lucky compared to the rest of the world. A large portion of our population is employed in truly essential businesses — military, law enforcement, healthcare and government. Those jobs will survive, and their employees will be paid.
But many of the businesses that make Del Rio special are at risk. Mom-and-pop businesses, whether it is your favorite restaurant, a unique thrift store or your favorite mechanic will have a difficult time surviving with the economy basically shut down.
Many are doing everything they can to survive. But it won’t be easy. And to be honest, some of these businesses that have made Del Rio what it is may be gone. Not many businesses can afford to go without income coming in for long.
When history books tell the story of the coronavirus, the biggest impact may not be lives lost, but instead a world economy devastated by drastic steps taken to save lives.
At the News-Herald, we are also not immune to the drastic changes in our economy. While we understand at times like this delivering accurate, timely news to our community is of utmost importance, we are a business. We are lucky because our parent company — Southern Newspapers Inc., is in excellent financial shape. SNI is a family-owned company that has little to no debt and has invested wisely through the years. The owner also understands the vital importance of community news during trying times.
So, we will persist. One way or another, we will be here to inform you throughout this crisis. How it looks may change, but the Del Rio News-Herald will be here.
My hope is that during the coming days and weeks, the news we report on and the news we hear around the world will turn from fear and uncertainty to hope and enthusiasm. We will get through this. I just hope it’s sooner rather than later.
David Rupkalvis is the publisher of the Del Rio News-Herald.