Last Saturday, Marjorie Conder found a flier on her screen door, asking if she needed any help during the coronavirus pandemic.

It said, in part, “Please feel free to text or call if you run out of necessities during this season of social distancing, and we will do our best to deliver and help where needed.

“We are here for you.”

There was a phone number listed.

Marjorie thought, “What a wonderful thing for someone to do,” and then, “She could be my lifesaver.”

Marjorie is 90 and her son Lory, who lives with her, is 70. Neither should be out in public because older adults are at greatest risk from the virus.

But they were out of eggs.

Teaching lessons about kindness

Shannon Moore was thrilled to hear from Marjorie. She put the call on speaker, so her six kids could listen.

They had printed 400 fliers to distribute in areas designated for residents 55 and older near their Ahwatukee Foothills home.

Shannon wanted to make sure older residents were safe and taken care of. She also wanted her children to learn important lessons while they were out of school.

Kindness. Responsibility. Compassion.

When you’re a kid, sometimes it doesn’t feel like there’s much you can do at a time like this. Shannon told hers, “You can move mountains for people in need.”

Her kids also make bread and give it away in their neighborhood.

“Love your neighbor,” Shannon said. “That’s what we’re focusing on.”

From the fliers, they got dozens of calls from people thanking them for their offer. Some were so moved they cried.

Marjorie was their first request for help.

They found only a dozen eggs at the grocery store but Shannon’s mother has backyard chickens and gave them another dozen.

Shannon’s three youngest — Jacob, who’s 11, Andrew, who’s 8, and Eloise, who’s 7 — went with her to deliver the eggs, carrying them carefully.

“They looked so pleased with themselves,” Marjorie said. “It was wonderful.”

But there was more to this than just delivering eggs.

Memories of another time

Shannon and her children stood on the front porch, a safe distance from Marjorie, who stood in her doorway holding the two dozen eggs the Moores had brought her.

The kids wanted to know about her life, so she told them she had been a high school English and journalism teacher and recently self-published a book, “’Furriners’ in Appalachia,” about her time in Kentucky.

Shannon asked if Marjorie had experienced anything like this pandemic.

Her children hung on Marjorie’s every word as she told them how she kept her three kids away from public pools and big crowds when polio was prevalent and worried if they got sore throats or fevers.

“But it wasn’t like this,” Marjorie said. “It was just a matter of being cautious.”

This reminds her of what it was like during World War II when gas, sugar, butter and meat were in short supply.

They grew vegetables in their “victory garden,” and her mother canned tomatoes and peaches. Tissues were scarce, so her mother cut up a sheet to make handkerchiefs.

Everyone was limited to two new pairs of shoes a year, and her brother grew so fast that her parents use their allotments to him.

“I was a kid,” Marjorie said. “But I was still aware of the togetherness of our country.”

People show they care

Shannon and her children made her feel that way again.

“In this time of fear and uncertainty, it warms my heart to know that people are kind and caring and concerned about others,” Marjorie said.

Friends and family email and call to make sure she’s OK. She does the same.

“I think maybe one of the good things that is coming out of this awful pandemic is that people are showing that they care for each other,” Marjorie said.

She is grateful to Shannon and her family. They made her feel safe.

Reach Bland at [email protected]. Follow her on Facebook and Twitter @KarinaBland.

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