United We Stand

Hello DSDI Members. We are celebrating after a very short but productive trip to Philadelphia ringing our Liberty Bell for the 244th celebration. As you know, DSDI’s decision was difficult this Spring as we realized we could not allow our children and their families to be exposed to COVID-19 as the cases in Philly continued to rise. The National Park Service was flexible, inviting us to move our annual celebration in Philly from 2020 to 2021. Our host and hostess, Gene and Carol Mayhew, and their daughter Stacy Clements, made calls to every bell tapper so all could move to the following scheduled years ahead. We much appreciate their efforts. Still, someone had to stand up and be counted for DSDI July 4th so we wouldn’t lose our incredible annual opportunity to ring our Bell, now and in the future.

The City of Philadelphia allowed less than 25 people in the building. Only one DSDI member was invited for the July 4thcelebration, allowing to tap the Bell but not to speak. We were included in the press release from organizers Pennsylvania Society of Sons of the Revolution. Despite travel, heat, cancelled hotel with 53 others, threatening COVID-19, limited restaurants, required masks to wear, scheduled protests and more, my supportive husband and I managed to arrive at the designated hour. We exchanged pleasantries with NPS, PSSR and all those who were invited by NPS to ring our Bell. As directed, we left immediately after the presentation and jumped on the highway for home. Protests began at Independence Hall within the hour, well covered by the Media. DSDI was mentioned in many news stories.

All of these thoughts remind me of our 56 Signers and their families. Our challenges are so small by comparison of what they did for us. Let’s look ahead for Philly 2021. Did you know Alexander Hamilton lived there for a time? Did you know there is a Legoland outside Philly? Did you know that Signer Robert Morris’s large statue still draws white plastic utensils? Fun ahead for all of us as we plan for Philly 2021.

Lucy Duke Tonacci

DSDI President-General