Indian Trail community gives 82-year-old neighbor a ‘happy birthday parade’

Indian Trail community gives 82-year-old neighbor a ‘happy birthday parade’

INDIAN TRAIL, N.C. (WBTV) - COVID-19 has forced people to keep a distance from their neighbors, but that doesn’t mean they can’t still wish each other a happy birthday.

Cynthia Gabriels has lived in her Indian Trail neighborhood for 16 years.

She had no idea her neighbors planned a special surprise for her 82nd birthday.

Everyone practiced social distancing, of course.

Neighbors lined the street in their cars and honked as well as sung her a happy birthday.

Cynthia lost her husband just a few weeks ago.

With everything happening, she wasn't able to mourn with her family.

Her neighbors thought a birthday parade would be a kind way of lifting her spirits and help make her feel special.

“Times like this, you can always depend on your close neighbors and people that you haven’t seen in a long while,” Cynthia said. “It’s very touching and I know they care, just not about me, but about one another.”

Neighbor and parade organizer Kerry O’Connor has happy to give the birthday girl a smile.

“I don’t think it would have been less of a turnout because of the coronavirus,” O’Connor said. “I think more people are closer to home, that’s why we have a good turnout. But it is very important to stay connected to neighbors. We all need to check in on each other. She’s isolating alone right now because it’s not a good time for her to go out and so we need to check in on each other.”

Cynthia says she has wonderful neighbors and wants to thank everyone who came out to wish her a very special birthday.

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