By Sue Moore
Birthdays are hard to celebrate during the governor’s COVID-19 stay-at-home order, especially for youngsters who have a deep desire to have their buddies over to play with them.
Bill Hunt, a humble and healthy octogenarian in Vicksburg, did have his buddies over to observe his big number: 82. They just couldn’t get out of their cars and trucks to play with him. They all paraded by his home on Kathryn Street with fire trucks blaring, police sirens sounding, ambulance lights blinking, horns honking and signs fluttering, all in Hunt’s honor – 52 cars in all, he figured.
“I’ve never seen my husband at such a loss for words,” said Sue Hunt. “He can’t stop talking about it. He was completely surprised. We aren’t allowed to even get out of the house to go anywhere because our kids are too worried about us. We do sneak out once in a while but don’t dare tell the kids or they will get on us about it. We even had to cancel our 60th wedding anniversary party on March 18 due to the quarantine.”
The parade was the brainchild of granddaughter Sarah Howell and Chad Schippers of the village Department of Public Works. Hunt has helped out many times at Vicksburg Hardware; his daughter, Brenda, is part owner with her husband, Steve Schimp. Sarah also works there and together the family has been keeping the back doors open for orders so people can at least do fixup work around the house. Hunt also serves on the village Planning Commission. He and Sue are regulars each month at village council meetings.
Hunt wanted to say thank you to everyone who organized his birthday celebration, but he is still at a loss for words, which is very unusual for him, his wife indicated.