Florist donates locally-sourced flowers to Big Bend Hospice COVID-19 patients

Posted at 5:28 PM, Aug 03, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-03 17:28:45-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — As Florida's COVID-19 cases climb and isolated patients die alone, one local florist is doing what she can to bring a sense of peace to the pandemic.

The virus nearly shut down her business in Tallahassee but she's found a way to rebound and is helping others cope in the process.

"We have a lot of families that are isolated due to COVID," said Sharon Davidson, the director of Volunteer and Community Relations at Big Bend Hospice.

Inside Big Bend Hospice, life's journey is met with the solitude of social distancing and separation. But a seed of hope and sense of comfort comes as the light touches every petal, turning the challenge of a pandemic into an opportunity to do some good.

Missy Gunnels Kane owns a flower shop in Tallahassee.

Before the pandemic, she says they'd help decorate up to 200 events a year, spending about $8,000 a month just on flowers!

"Of course, all of them are canceled in the beginning of March," said Gunnels Kane.

Demand wilted, but she pivoted her business because of coronavirus and now sells flowers online until events pick back up.

But she arranges leftover flowers for special deliveries to Big Bend Hospice.

"It's not just benefiting the patients, but it also benefits our staff," Davidson said.

Davidson and her staff deliver the flowers Gunnels Kane has donated to families coping with difficult circumstances.

"That feeling of giving something is priceless," said Davidson.

"It's just a natural thing that makes you smile," Gunnels Kane said.

Turns out, Gunnels Kane has been making these special deliveries for years now.

She does it about once a week under normal circumstances.

While she says she sources flowers from all over the world, she's working with five local farms to make the bouquets that brighten so many days.