With case after case of the coronavirus disease mounting worldwide every day, and nationally, deaths increasing by the hour, this COVID-19 pandemic has taken over our unprepared lives and has succeeded in striking fear into the hearts of the fearless. It's a war, but not the kind we're used to fighting. Not like conventional warfare with arms, machine guns and bullets or rockets, bombs and missiles.

With conventional warfare, we see our enemies. We can talk to them. We can seek a cease fire during Christmas, Easter or other religious holy days, hoping our adversary agrees. We can negotiate the terms of a cease fire or a surrender because we can communicate with the enemy.

Not so with the coronavirus or new diseases that come our way. That's why we must continuously be on the lookout and heed the advice of the medical professionals who know more about this dreaded disease than we do.

It's also one of the reasons Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine became one of the nation's first governors to close schools starting in March for 15 days and why he just extended the stay home from school order for all students until at least the end of April with a very good chance it will be extended again to the end of the school year. It's why he asked us to stay home to prevent spreading this virus.

No school, of course has the kids, mostly the youngest ones twelve and under, giddy with glee. As time progresses, and they hear conversations from adults, radio, social media and the TV, their minds will change about the school closings. Until then, we must constantly be aware of their presence.

Let's be practical. Sure, their parents will order them to stay inside until this pandemic runs its course, which could be who knows when. But they're kids. How long do you think they'll remain cooped up in a house when the trees are budding, flowers are blooming and the sunny warmth becomes more of an everyday weather pattern than the cold winds of winter. And if they are anything like I was at their age, they're going to do whatever they have to do to get out of that house, grab their fishing gear, call their buddy and pet dog and head down to the banks of the lake to do a little fishing.

That means they'll be riding their bikes or walking to the lake with their hearts filled with excitement on landing a big one so early in the year. That, of course, would give them bragging rights with all their buddies for the rest of the season and lift their image among others to new heights.

With their minds on one thing, and one thing only, it means we, as parents and responsible adults must keep our eyes open and our attention focused on them whenever they come into view. They certainly won't be watching out for us. Their minds will be on fishing, So we have to watch for them.

With the rate this COVID-19 is wiping out adults, mostly seniors, our youth is the hope of our community. The are the hope of this nation. They are the hope of humanity. Let's not give this terrible pandemic any more help in wiping out the human race than what it's potential has already shown us.

In time, this pandemic will run its course. We just don't know when that will be. Most experts think it could be over by July. Others disagree, thinking it will last most of the summer and into the fall when the annual flu season begins. Until then, all we have left to do is to pray.

Remember, when you do make those emergency medical or grocery runs, don't forget to drive safely and to keep your eyes peeled for the little ones.

They are the future of this great state and nation.

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