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On the front lines, jobs

They’re anonymous in several ways. Health care workers’ army, cloaked in protective clothing layers, masks and visors. They are physicians and nurses, paramedics and care staff who work in Scotland diligently.

Maybe we don’t know their names, but back in the spring, at 8 p.m., people around the country were standing on doorsteps. And cheered on Thursday evenings. We painted rainbows and mounted them as a token of gratitude on windows, walls, fence rails, and lampposts.

All the important employees earn this sincere appreciation: emergency personnel, the army, delivery drivers, shop clerks, teachers, sanitation workers, factory workers, warehouse workers, postal workers, cooks, veterans, engineers, and many more.

For years to come, the horror and frustration at the horrendous death toll from the spread of coronavirus in nursing homes will reverberate. There was a glimmer of optimism in recent weeks when the first Covid-19 vaccines were administered to elderly residents and employees.

Photographer Elaine Livingstone visited the intensive care unit at the Royal Infirmary of Glasgow this summer. A series of strong portraits she shot
Medical workers at work on the front line of Covid 19.

Ruth Whyte, a senior nurse, has spent 19 years working in the ICU. She told the Glasgow Times, our sister newspaper, about the many difficulties she and her colleagues have experienced, not least when it came to creating the much-needed patient relation.

“With PPE and no visitors, things that would come naturally to you, you had to work a little harder,” she said. “It was a bit like detective work to find out about them and get a picture of them as a person.

“Touch is so important to us, but they didn’t have anyone to hold their hand, so I felt like I was their nurse and their visitor.”

We think of Ruth and all those that were like her when it comes to our 2020 Heroes of the Year. Those who went above and beyond selflessly. Those who put their own lives on the line to help others. Those who brought much needed light into the darkness of this Annus Horribilis.

Jemma Reekie and Laura Muir

As Scotland went into lockdown in March, Laura Muir and Jemma Reekie, athletes and training partners, pulled together to begin their journey towards Tokyo 2020. The Olympics might have been delayed, but it was an amazing year for the pair, trained by Andy Young.

In the 1,000m, Muir smashed the British record and set a world best in the 1,500m. Three times she ran under four minutes in the 1,500m, setting this year’s fastest times in the world. In Berlin, the five-time European champion ran 3:57.40, in Stockholm 3:57.86 and in Chorzow 3:58.24.

Laura Muir hugs an overjoyed Jemma Reekie after smashing the British indoor record at the Emirates Arena in Glasgow in the 800m.

In the 800m, the mile and 1,500m in 2020, Reekie smashed the British indoor record. With a time of 1:57.91, she topped the world indoor 800m rankings and also broke British, Scottish and British U23 records along the way. Undefeated this year in all but one 800m event, Reekie has run five of the world’s top 14 times. Those are quick legs.

Don MacPheea

Renfrew ferry skipper Don MacPhee did not hesitate and leapt into the water to save the driver’s life when a car fell into the River Clyde.

“When the drama unfolded in May, the father of five from South Uist was steering the ferry toward Yoker Slip. He said, “I could see [the car]being pulled downstream, and we put it in gear and dove over. Dove, We Dove
We dove in and got the woman out of there. It’s not what you’re doing.

It was a case of being in the right place at the right time: at the end of March, MacPhee was supposed to return to the Outer Hebrides after a training course, but he remained in Renfrew when the UK went into lockdown two days before his departure. A happy coincidence.

Tao Geoghegan Hart The Hart

Some may argue that the argument of Scotland on Tao Geoghegan Hart – who won the Giro d’Italia in October – is slim, but hear us out. While he was born in London, he qualifies because of his Scottish father (thanks to the grandparent rule of Fifa, we forget how many footballers have played for Scotland).

There were, there were

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