Thanksgiving might bring changes in holiday-travel habits
More people are expected on airplanes and highways over Thanksgiving than last year, but changing habits around work and play might spread out the crowds and reduce the usual amount of holiday travel stress. Travel experts say the pandemic and the ability of many people to work remotely has blurred the lines between business and leisure trips. They think many people will start holiday trips early or return home later than normal because they will spend a few days working remotely — or at least tell the boss they're working remotely. © Provided by The Associated Press Travelers walk the American Airline concourse Monday, Nov. 21, 2022, in Miami, Fla.
A janitor working his shift at a Virginia Walmart. A 40-year-old woman returning home to Colorado Springs for the holidays. A young man at his girlfriend’s side, watching her friend perform in a drag show. © Eze Amos for The New York Times Flowers left for the three students who were killed at the University of Virginia on Nov. 13.
Three college football players. A mother who worked to help foster children. One bartender who remembered your drink and another who danced. © Daniel Brenner for The New York Times A vigil outside of Club Q in Colorado Springs on Monday.
White and Black, gay and straight, old and young. The collection of the newly dead from just three of this month’s mass shootings are the very picture of the ideals — inclusivity, setting aside differences — that America prides itself on at this time each November. Fourteen people who did not know their last Thanksgiving was already behind them.
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© Eze Amos for The New York Times A vigil at the University of Virginia.
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Tuesday’s rampage, in which six people were killed in a Walmart in Chesapeake, Va., was the 33rd mass shooting in November alone, and the nation’s 606th this year, according to the Gun Violence Archive.
That shooting occurred after three students were killed at the University of Virginia on Nov. 13 and five people were killed on Saturday night at a gay club in Colorado Springs.
Yesterday’s parents, children and friends became Thursday’s empty chairs.
“She was going to be at my house for Thanksgiving,” Natalee Skye Bingham said of her friend, Kelly Loving, a Memphis native who promised a spread of Southern food — deviled eggs, collard greens and baked mac and cheese.
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“She couldn’t wait to cook for me,” Ms. Bingham said. “And I couldn’t wait to cook for her.”
Instead, she was killed inside Club Q during a night meant to cheer her up. “Now, it’s one less person at my table,” Ms. Bingham said.
All three shootings were carried out at places that, for those within, felt warmly familiar. Safe.
Club Q was widely described as “family” to the L.G.B.T.Q. and straight patrons alike who came there for a drink and a show. The University of Virginia athletes were shot on a bus returning from a play they had watched for a class. And now a Walmart store, a place instantly recognizable throughout America, this one located in a former colony older than the country itself. The Virginia state seal was created by a signer of the Declaration of Independence. Its motto: “Sic Semper Tyrannis.” Thus Always to Tyrants. © Kenny Holston for The New York Times A makeshift memorial outside the Walmart in Chesapeake, Va.
“It’s a small town, and it’s the Walmart right up the street,” said Sapporah Watkins, 28, who lives nearby. “Either you’ve worked at the Walmart, or a friend of a friend, or whatever the case may be. It’s unexpected. Definitely.”
Happy Thanksgiving 2022 Wishes, Messages and Greetings
The holiday is observed on the fourth Thursday in November, typically by large meal with a roast turkey. Here are some messages you can share.Each year, it is observed on the fourth Thursday in November, typically by large family gathering to have a meal that has a roast turkey at the center of it. The turkey is usually accompanied with stuffing with onions and celery, mashed potatoes, gravy, green beans, dinner rolls, corn, pumpkin pie and cranberry sauce. But each family puts its own spin on the Thanksgiving meal.
At the University of Virginia, the slain football players — Devin Chandler, Lavel Davis Jr. and D’Sean Perry, “vibrant, beautiful young men” — were celebrated at a memorial service that drew some 9,000 people.
Fearsome on the field, the players were remembered as sweet young boys. Mr. Davis, a wide receiver on the team, had the number of the highway exit leading to his hometown, Ridgeville, S.C., tattooed on his arm, and he made it sound like “the biggest city in the world,” a teammate remembered.
His teammate, Mr. Perry, once dressed as a red Power Ranger for Halloween as a child, so taken with his costume that he didn’t take it off until after Thanksgiving. And Mr. Chandler’s family still had a video of him at age 10, dancing with abandon in a parking lot.
“To my three young kings, I am eternally grateful for you,” their coach, Tony Elliott, said during the service. “Thank you for being a light to the world.”
Half the country away, in Club Q, with its bingo and karaoke nights and weekend drag shows, Derrick Rump and Daniel Aston were popular bartenders.
“Daniel had this smile that you would see from across the club,” a friend and co-worker, Shadavia Green, 38, said, “and you would literally be like, ‘Let me find a reason to walk over there,’ just to be closer to Daniel.”
High-flying balloon characters star in Thanksgiving parade
NEW YORK (AP) — Throngs of spectators lined the streets of New York on Thursday as colorful, high-flying balloons helped usher in the holiday season during the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. The annual tradition, which dates back nearly a century, packed streets as a procession of giant inflatables and floats streamed for more than 40 blocks from Central Park to Herald Square. Children balanced atop metal barricades and hung from scaffolding to watch the balloons amid mostly sunny skies and a slight breeze.“Blue, Blue. There's Blue,” yelled Divyam Kumar, 6, as his father helped balance him and his 4-year-old brother Aanu Aryan on a metal rail.
Mr. Aston, a 28-year-old transgender man, loved performing at the shows.
“He would get crazy wigs and outfits and he would jump across the stage and he could slide on his knees,” his mother, Sabrina Aston, told The Associated Press. “And he was quite entertaining. Everyone started hooting and hollering.”
Tiara Kelley, a drag performer, said both Mr. Rump and Mr. Aston welcomed her into the Club Q family a month ago, always ready with a shot of Fireball whiskey or some other special concoction for her after the show.
“They were just two of the most amazing people,” she said. “It’s just not something you get really often at a bar, to have the bartenders so involved and interested,” she said.
Raymond Green Vance, 22, was the opposite of a regular — he had only set foot in Club Q for the first time on Saturday, to watch the show with his girlfriend since middle school and her father, Richard M. Fierro, a U.S. Army veteran happy to be invited along.
“These kids want to live that way, want to have a good time, have at it,” he said later as he described the night. “I’m happy about it because that is what I fought for, so they can do whatever the hell they want.”
When the shooting began, Mr. Fierro leaped to his feet and tackled the attacker, saving countless lives.
But later, as the survivors huddled together, the loyal boyfriend was not among them. “My little girl, she screamed,” Mr. Fierro said, “and I was crying with her.”
In Chesapeake, the dead were identified a day after Tuesday night’s shooting, in which a longtime Walmart manager arrived at the store with a handgun and extra ammunition and opened fire before killing himself, the police said.
First came the names: Randall Blevins, a longtime member of the team that set prices and arranged merchandise. Brian Pendleton, a maintenance worker known to help with whatever the problem was at hand.
Then came the adjectives, painfully familiar: “Quiet,” a neighbor said of one victim, Tyneka Johnson. Another called her “a sweet young lady.”
“Such a nice guy,” a friend posted on Facebook, speaking of Mr. Pendleton.
They are among the qualities for which Americans are most thankful, rendered now in too-short obituaries.
Chris Cameron, Amy Qin, Kris Rhim, Dave Philipps, Eliza Fawcett, Nicholas Bogel-Burroughs and Rich Griset contributed reporting.
Club Q suspect and mother accused of verbally attacking airplane passengers with racial slurs months before the Colorado shooting .
"Even my friend was like, we won't be surprised, like, if he's a mass shooter. And it was scary to think that," one passenger told KDVR.In June, President Joe Biden signed into law the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act — the most significant piece of gun legislation to pass in decades. Part of the bill included $750 million in federal funding for states to implement intervention programs such as gun restraining orders, more colloquially known as "red flag laws.