Daughter’s creative drive-by designs help her send love to her mom

Medical Watch

CHICAGO — A message from below to a loved one above. In a high rise, separated by the quarantine, a daughter got creative when it comes to connecting with her mom during the pandemic.  

 “My mom lives on the 41st floor of a building,” Julie Hicks said. “With the lakefront being closed down so suddenly, she had nothing to look at. Usually you can look at atleast people or boats and now it’s just cars. So I think couple weeks into that I thought she’s going to go crazy up there with nothing to look at.”

So Hicks took a roll of tape to the top of her minivan and set out to add a little something special to her mom’s view.

She started creating the aerial artwork. Whether a simple flower or a sombrero for Cinco de Mayo. Since then, the drive by designs have been a bright spot for Judy McDonald.

“Julie called me around 11 in the morning and said, ‘Look out your window at 11:21,” McDonald said. “So I looked out my window and of course I took my camera, which is pretty much with me all the time. And she drove by and I grabbed some pictures of it.”

On a recent trip, as she rolled her taped-out John Hancock down Lake Shore Drive, making the 13-minute trip to her mom’s high rise, Hicks said she never imagined herself as an artist.

“Never in a million years,” she said. “But I guess quarantine does that to people. They discover talents they never knew they had.”

“It makes me feel great,” McDonald  said. “She’s checking on me but she’s also taking good care of me. And it’s a great way to communicate.”

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