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Sixteen Year Old American Pilot Delivers Virus Supplies to Forgotten Hospitals

While other tweens are sitting at home sending puppy-filter video chats to one another, TJ Kim is saving lives.

At a time when most teenagers are growing ever more annoyed with the idea of social distancing, one young man in Virginia is taking to the skies.

For high schoolers across the country, the global COVID-19 pandemic has been a real buzzkill.  Many saw not only their classes canceled for the remainder of the year, but also their proms, sporting events, and standardized testing.  For those preparing to go off to college, there is a whole new set of headaches to overcome as well.

So, as the teens and tweens sit at home, sending anthropomorphized video chats to one another, they are simply bored, and waiting for the world to come back to normal.

One teenager in Virginia, however, is doing quite the opposite.

A 16-year-old Maryland high school student disappointed that his lacrosse season was canceled amid the coronavirus pandemic is on a mission to help small rural hospitals that desperately need supplies, and he is using his flying experience to do so.

TJ Kim, a sophomore at Landon School in Bethesda, Md., flew his first delivery by plane on March 27 to a 25-bed hospital in Luray, Va.

“They kind of conveyed to me that they were really forgotten about,” he said. “Everyone was wanting to send donations to big city hospitals. Every hospital is hurting for supplies, but it’s the rural hospitals that really feel forgotten.”

TJ isn’t dealing in small potatoes here, either.

His most recent delivery carried 3,000 gloves; 1,000 head covers, 500 shoe covers, 50 non-surgical masks, 20 pairs of protective eyewear and 10 bottles of hand sanitizer to help a hospital in Woodstock.

Kim’s goal is to make deliveries to seven rural hospitals in Virginia that are defined as critical access hospitals. The effort began when he talked with his family in McLean, Va., about ways to serve the community.

TJ is yet another shining example of how America has come together in our time of need.

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