Sam Sublette | Managing Editor
2020. A year of new hopes and possibilities. A year of new beginnings. However, the year would be remembered for the unexpected events that took place. Events such as heartbreaking deaths, shocking disasters, and even misleading information. It is important, however, to recap these events and to keep them in mind when looking into the next year of 2021.
Over 46 million acres were burned. 3,500 houses and buildings were destroyed. 34 people were killed. Avon high school student, senior Israel Mazon, was in a similar situation as he and his family were in a fire.
“It really is a very difficult situation when you lose a lot of your belongings, but even worse if someone gets hurt,” Mazon said. “No one got hurt, but we did lose everything we took with us including a car that blew up.”
Billions of dollars in damages as well as the increased risk of endangered species. Mazon can relate to their problems.
“You can never truly understand someone unless you’ve experienced it yourself,” Mazon said.
Around 10 A.M., basketball player Kobe Bryant passed away along with his daughter Gianna Bryant. It became a great shock to Avon high school student sophomore John McHugh.
“I’ll never forget it, I just walked into my house after a long day of school and my dad had the most shocked look on his face. With his hands on his head, he said to me ‘Kobe Bryant is dead’,” McHugh said.
McHugh looked up to Kobe because of his values.
“He had core values regardless of how unpopular they are. I really respect that in someone,” McHugh said.
All Avon schools were shut down for the rest of the school year. The quarantine was taken place as an attempt to keep the students healthy and safe.
Avon high school counselor, Elliot Doan, among other Avon staff members saw the sudden shutdown as surprising.
“At the time, people were very surprised when we shut down, but we were student safety oriented and shut down was an early precaution and it ended up being the right decision,” Doan said.
Brahos had to face a difficult decision to either stay at home or continue going to school.
“I am a family of 5. I got two brothers and I am the only one that actually goes to school because my two brothers stay at home. Two [of our family members] are immunocompromised too, so it was a tough decision to put myself out there.,” Brahos said.
Looking back, Brahos wished he knew how bad the virus would be at the time when it first hit.
“I underestimated it because I thought it was just another flu and a lot of people still do,” Brahos said. “I wish a lot of other people would see how terrible this virus is.”
Kim Jong-Un’s “death”-
CNN among other news outlets claimed Kim Jong Un to be dead. Most reported that he died from heart surgery.
The claim first came from the South Korean news outlet, Daily NK. The translation was misleading causing other American news outlets to falsely report on Kim Jong Un’s health.
Kim Jong Un was seen cutting the ribbon to a fertilizer factory. Kim Jong Un was not dead.
The protests caused over $50 million of property damage and 14,000 arrests as of June 2020.
Graduated Avon high school student, Marilyn Kolpien, helped set up protests in Avon.
“We organized the event because we thought it was important that our community learns about the experiences of others,” Kolpien said.
Graduated Avon high school student, Sam Ogunsanya, said that taking action is important.
“It’s important to take part in civil disturbance when the cause is just. Silence is violence,” Ogunsanya said.
The Beirut explosion killed 200 people and injured 5,000. The blast itself was one of the largest non-nuclear explosions in history and was the size of one tenth of the nuclear blast at Hiroshima.
The costs from the explosion are adding up to around $5 billion in property damage. The pandemic was already worsening the Lebanese economy, but the explosion only put that economy in greater danger.
The Trump administration made an executive decision to ban the app Tik Tok. However, the ban was denied in court. Avon high school student sophomore Savannah Lee agrees with the court.
“No [there shouldn’t be a ban], because a bunch of kids doing dances is not going to threat the global security,” Lee said.
Tik Tok is owned by ByteDance which is a Chinese company, so the Trump administration viewed it as a threat to American citizens. However, Lee sees no harm.
“I don’t think there is anything bad about it. Just good fun,” Lee said.
How 2020 will be Remembered
Avon High School history teacher, Aaron Vogl, finds it hard to relate this unprecedented year to another other past year in history as “people will not be forgetting 2020 anytime soon.”
“I see a lot of comparisons with the Spanish influenza outbreak. I think with the Spanish influenza, it was a lot more devastating than COVID-19 has proven, but that’s the only comparison I can draw,” Vogl said.
Vogl predicts 2020 events that will still occur in upcoming years.
“I think we are still going to be dealing with this virus. We still don’t have a concrete solution to the problem yet,” Vogl said.
Trends and More
- TV Shows: The Boys, Brooklyn 99, Mandalorian, The Crown, The Queen’s Gambit, Umbrella Academy, Watchmen
- Words of the Year: Quarantine, social distancing, pandemic, Black Lives Matter, Face Masks, COVID-19
- Memes: World War 3, Leonardo Dicaprio, Among Us, Fall Guys, Presidential Election
- Video Games: Cyber Punk, The Last of Us part II, Ghost of Tsushima, Doom Eternal, Final Fantasy VII Remake, Valorant, Watchdogs Legion, Assassin’s Creed Valhalla
- Movies: Bill and Ted Face the Music, Hamilton, The Social Dilemma, Greyhound, The Call of the Wild
- Slang: Poggers, cap, big oof, It is what it is, pain, dont hmu, built different, sus, GOAT, fit, heat, vibes, weird flex but ok, down bad, it be like that sometimes