Sylvia Rucker has been a caretaker most of her life. As the head cook at Hannah Gibbons Elementary School in Collinwood, she prepares meals for approximately 250 students daily, and has four adult children of her own.
But when her oldest daughter died unexpectedly in the summer of 2019, Rucker was suddenly thrust into the role of parent once again.
“My daughter went into the hospital with a toothache. She passed away a week later, and left behind three kids,” says Rucker. “I realized I was going to have to start all over again as a mother.”
Rucker became the primary caregiver for her five-, six-, and 11-year-old grandchildren, all while working full-time. These stresses were compounded in the spring, when COVID-19 forced schools to close and students to stay home.
Cuyahoga County, City of Cleveland and Global Cleveland issued the following statements:
“It’s wrong to disrespect some of the 43 million immigrants who live in this country, who are an important part of our country, and who make our country better. Our community is a better place because of the mix of people we have here. And it is particularly outrageous to use vile and racist language to describe the people of entire countries and a continent. The good people of the United States should not sit quietly by in the face of hateful insults coming out of the White House,” said Cuyahoga County Executive Armond Budish.Continue reading