The Coronavirus Pandemic’s First Anniversary in Bedford

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JMcCT (c) 2021 all rights reserved

Honk if You’re Happy – Lane School students celebrate the spring-like weather and the end of remote learning on the first anniversary of the WHO’s pandemic declaration.


The World Health Organization declared Covid-19/coronavirus an official pandemic bringing Bedford and the rest of the country to a halt almost overnight on Wednesday, March 11, 2020.

Bedford schools and restaurants closed; traffic disappeared from The Great Road; disinfectant wipes, household paper products, canned goods, and cake mix disappeared from supermarket shelves. It’s been just a year, but the sameness of the past 365 days and more than 530,000 coronavirus deaths made the year seem far longer.

To read about some of the ways Bedford residents responded during the past year, read a PDF of The Bedford Guide 2021.

Celebrating an Early Spring Day on the Anniversary

On Thursday, March 11, 2021, the declaration’s first anniversary, sunshine and temperatures approaching 70 degrees made everything feel brighter in Bedford.

Although its rollout has been rocky, vaccinations are increasing, supermarket shortages seem to be a thing of the past, and schools are reopening. The early spring weather brought out summer-clad runners, cyclists, and convertibles with their tops down.

Four Lane School students danced alongside The Great Road, waving signs inviting passing drivers to ‘Honk if you’re Happy.’ They celebrated their last day of remote learning (in-person classes begin for Bedford elementary schools on Monday), along with the weather.

Observing the Pandemic’s Anniversary and Mourning its Losses

Courtesy image (c) 2021 all rights reserved

Allyson Printz and Alison Weaver, with just a few of the 16,500 Remembrance Beads strung by parishioners at First Church of Christ to commemorate Massachusetts lives lost to coronavirus during the first year of the pandemic

First Church of Christ, Congregational invites the community to gather (physically distant and masked) in front of the Church at 1:30 p.m. on Sunday, March 14 to bless the congregation’s ‘Beads of Remembrance.’

Led by Allyson Printz and Alison Weaver, parishioners strung more that 16,500 beads to honor and remember each Massachusetts resident who succumbed to the coronavirus.

The beads will hang from the railings at the church entrance as a memorial. Sunday afternoon’s service will include music, prayers, and hanging the beads.

Pastor John Castricum welcomes the community to “join us as we honor, remember, grieve, pray, and hope.”

Reflections in the Time of Pandemic

On Tuesday, March 16, The Citizen will begin a week of reflections shared by members of our community.

With thanks to the following contributors:

  • Tuesday: Senior Citizens: Marjorie Roemer and CoA March newsletter message
  • Wednesday: Young Families Stephanie Keep; Tara O’Loughlin/Pandemic Puppies
  • Thursday: Students: Ryan Doucette, Emily Doucette, Brooke Shamon. and Will Froehlich (Gr. 2)
  • Friday: Pastor John Castricum

A Community Invitation

If you or your family discovered a silver lining during the pandemic and would like to share it, please email

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