Coronavirus in China: Chicagoan living in Beijing on surviving the COVID-19 pandemic

BEIJING (WLS) -- A Chicagoan living and working in China has lived through the pandemic there and has an interesting perspective on how things are being handled, both at home and abroad.

Adam Carter, 45, is a Fulbright scholar who has been teaching eighth grade social studies in the Chinese capital. He grew up in Lincoln Park and worked as a beer vendor for the Cubs and White Sox. In the off-seasons he traveled the world doing charity work.

Now settled in China he has seen the huge impact the pandemic has had on the people of China.

"It has taken a toll mentally on some of my students and friends here, that really went through a lot of, you know, it was really difficult," he said.

Carter also said he admires the Chinese commitment to surviving the pandemic by staying in and following social distancing.

"Everybody has to play a part, you know, it is a matter of sacrifice for the greater good," he said.

There have been signs of life returning to normal in Wuhan, the epicenter of the pandemic, where residents lined up to board the train earlier this week. It was the first time in more than two months they were able to leave the city, which had been under strict lockdown. It was also the first day without a death in China from COVID-19.

Carter said life is also still far from normal in Beijing, though it is slowly returning. There are no large gatherings for sports, concerts or clubs. And there are strict limits on the number of people in restaurants and stores. Everyone wears a mask in public.

But he said the country is slowly recovering, and that is a hopeful sign.

"People are starting to come out of their houses and feeling more comfortable going out, but you still don't see big crowds," Carter said.

Carter said now that life is returning to normal in China, hospitals have surplus supplies of PPE. He's working on gathering that and sending it back home to Chicago.

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