CANFIELD, Ohio (WKBN) – In October, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine called upon mayors to form their own COVID-19 defense teams. Two men in Canfield accepted the challenge and now have a plan.
A couple of months ago, Canfield Mayor Richard Duffett had to form some sort of response to the COVID-19 surge. So, he made a phone call to help lead Canfield’s COVID-19 Defense Task Force.
“He’s a professional military officer and I knew this required military thinking and planning,” Duffett said.
Chuck Coleman is a West Point graduate and former Army colonel while Duffett is a Naval Academy graduate. They felt they were the men up for the task.
“Organizational ability. The military has trained officers, in particular, extensively on how to properly organize, plan and execute things,” Coleman said.
Their task force has about 25 volunteers split up into three committees. The education committee is lead by Canfield Schools Superintendent Joe Knoll, the communication committee is led by Duffett and the recognition committee is led by Canfield Police Chief Chuck Colucci.
“The education committee develops the information that is important for Canfield people to know. The communication committee is going to develop the techniques to get that information out to them. Then the recognition committee is going to go around our community, recognize people that are doing good things in defense of the COVID in our community,” Coleman said.
The task force meets once a week, looking over data and figuring out ways to move Canfield in the right direction. They’ve come up with public service announcements from people in the community who had COVID-19.
“But I do understand what it’s like to be quarantined. I had to spend three weeks away from my children,” said Renee English, with Canfield Schools.
“I said I’ll wait one more day before I go to the hospital, see if it turns. It didn’t turn,” said Cardinal Joint Fire Dept. Chief Don Hutchison.
To unite the community, they made masks with the Canfield Cardinal on them. They also plan to release a dashboard on the city’s website that’s full of COVID-19 and vaccine information.
There could be at least two places in Canfield that could distribute the vaccine.