A Look Back on 2020

The coronavirus, the Black Lives Matter movement, devastating hurricanes and wildfires, and the deaths of iconic figures such as Kobe Bryant, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Chadwick Boseman, Alex Trebeck, and Eddie Van Halen have made 2020 a year many people want to forget. Some say the year has been cursed. Others consider it simply unlucky. One thing that everyone can agree on, however, is that 2020 has been one of the most challenging years in recent memory. 

“I think that 2020 has been the worst year of my life,” said sixth grader Elena Gahan. “I have to wear masks, and I have to social distance in school. Also, in quarantine I wasn’t productive, and it was boring.” 

Chadwick Boseman sadly passed away in August and people continue to mourn his death. He was well know for his role as T’Challa in Black Panther as well as many other films. (Image courtesy of NBC News)

Many people were not only affected by the coronavirus, but also by the shocking deaths of some high-profile celebrities.. 

“Chadwick Boseman was an inspiration to me, and it was so sad to see him go,” said seventh grader Owen Olbers.

“Kobe Bryant and [his daughter] GiGi Bryant were the most emotional passings [for me],” said seventh grader Ava Seested. “I loved them and I have always loved both of them together.” 

Here’s a chronological look back at the devastating year that was 2020: 

January: The tensions between the United States and ISIS rise after the terrorist organization’s founder and leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, is assassinated by U.S. Special Operations Forces (basically, some people thought there was going to be a third World War). The Australian bushfires run rampant – destroying many habitats and killing the animals within. Kobe Bryant, the world-renowned basketball player, passes away in a helicopter crash. Also, the first case of the infamous coronavirus is confirmed in the United States.

February: The Boy Scouts of America files for bankruptcy after years of being in debt. The first United States death due to COVID-19 occurs. Many began to panic, and basic household items such as toilet paper and hand sanitizer are completely out of stock nationwide.

March: After an increased number of coronavirus cases, the United States, along with many other countries throughout the world, go on lockdown as schools and businesses close. At the end of March in the U.S. alone, there were over 160,000 confirmed cases and just under 3,000 deaths. Travel restrictions to and from the U.S. begin to be put in place. The NHL and NBA suspend their regular seasons, hoping to continue their seasons later in the year.

April: The coronavirus peaks both in deaths and in hospitalizations in the United States. Some people continue to panic, but some also begin to get bored. The global economy suffers heavy hits due to the virus, and many small businesses close, resulting in the loss of thousands of jobs. 

May: Coronavirus cases continue to surge, and on May 25, an African-American man named George Floyd was killed by police officers in Minneapolis, MN. This kicks off the “Black Lives Matter” protests and riots all around the country. 

June: Protests continue throughout the U.S., and some even reach other nations. Coronavirus cases are still high in most places, and travel restrictions continue throughout the world. 

July: Coronavirus cases continue to rise, and the Black Lives Matter protests are also prevalent. Major League Baseball begins play on July 24, abbreviating its season to 60 games. In addition, the NBA and NHL seasons resume at the end of the month, but many fans are upset that they are unable to attend games in person..  

August: A large spike in cases occurs throughout mid-August, and most schools throughout the country begin virtually due to the Coronavirus. The Black Lives Matter protests continue nationwide, however, there are no violent riots that plagued many cities in May and June. Actor Chadwick Boseman, known primarily for his role as Black Panther in the Marvel films, passes away due to colon cancer.

September: Many schools return to on-campus learning, but some shut down quite rapidly due to the rise in COVID-19 cases. Beloved Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg passes away due to pancreatic cancer. The protests, for the most part, have stopped, however tensions begin to rise over something new: the 2020 presidential election.

October: Two countries, Azerbaijan and Armenia, continue to battle after months of war. Armenia is backed by Russia, while Azerbaijan is backed by Turkey, who in turn is backed by the United States. Many think that because of these alliances, there may be a large-scale war. Also, President Donald J. Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden continue to battle via debates as both remain on the campaign trail.

Vice President Joe Biden takes over the house from President Donald Trump in November. Joe Biden’s upcoming Vice President, Kamala Harris is going to be the first woman Vice President to take office. (Image courtesy of Business Insider)

November: The results are in, and Former Vice President Joe Biden is set to be the 46th president of the United States. However, President Trump, his administration, and many Republican voters accuse states such as Georgia, Pennsylvania, and Arizona of voter fraud, and President Trump files challenges and threatens legal action in several states. Both Hall of Fame professional basketball player, coach, and announcer Tommy Heinsohn and long-known Jeopardy host Alex Trebeck both pass away. The coronavirus begins to spike once more across many areas of the U.S. as the holidays approach. 

Despite all of this, however, it is important to remember that there have been a lot of good things that have taken place throughout the world this past year. A vaccine for the pandemic seems to be imminent, the economy has bounced back strongly, many schools and businesses remain open. Furthermore, there are a lot of people who have been able to recognize the blessings and positive effects that have resulted from this strange and dangerous year. 

“2020 has been a year of ups and downs, but one positive experience has been the extra time with my family,” said Academic Dean Mr. Chuck Maddox. “It has been nice spending quality time with my family during this hectic year.” 

Family was definitely one of the highlights for students as well. 

“My most positive experience in 2020 was probably getting a new cousin,” said seventh grader R.J. Pierman. 

Others have been comforted by innovations at TBS.

“The School has found a new way to connect with home [through Zoom] and how to take precautions,” said eighth grader Frederika D’Loughy. “When everything comes back to normal, we can [still] Zoom from home if we are sick.” 

Still, others felt a sense of unity in the way that people cared for one another. 

“[I enjoyed] experiencing the teamwork that was put into quarantining and controlling the spread of coronavirus,” said eighth grader Darrow Becker. “[It’s nice to feel that] you are not alone,” he said. 

So, 2020 has been a tough year for so many, but where has that gotten us? In the end, it has allowed us to begin new friendships, pick up new hobbies, and grow closer together with those we love. During one of America’s most trying times, we may find comfort in the wise words spoken by one of our country’s founders, President George Washington, who said, “Perseverance and spirit have done wonders in all ages.”