South Side boutique gives away handbags to 150 moms ahead of Mother's Day

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Mother's Day weekend is approaching and children young and old are still showing moms appreciation, even in the age of social distancing.

Outside La Salle Flowers in River North, colorful bouquets were bundled for contactless pickup Friday. It serves as a reminder that families will be physically separated this Mother's Day.

"I've taken my mom to the store and then we have lunch together. None of that's going to happen this year," said Tina Chernick.

Chernik won't be with her own children either on Sunday. The nurse will be caring for COVID-19 patients at Loyola University Medical Center.

"I'm lucky I get to come home and hug my kids and see them, and if I could help someone use an iPad and communicate with their family, then it's going to be a good Mother's Day," she said.

That kind of selfless determination has inspired boutique owner Bernie Hicks.

"Thank you for what they've done and what they continue to do on the front line, risk their own life to save others," said Bernie Hicks, owner of Ruby Brownstone Purse Collection.

Thanks to an anonymous donation, Ruby Brownstone on Chicago's South Side is giving handbags away to 150 moms, many of whom are first responders.

"It's appreciated," said nursing assistant Nicole Davis. "This is what we do. This is what we signed up for and I love what I do."

Jean Orme, 101, also picked up a purse Friday.

The centenarian was extra cautious, telling her grandchildren no visits even through the window.

"It's going to be sort of sad, but I've gotten used to this now so I can accept it," Orme said.

She's expecting a phone call, which is still a safe way to let mom know you care.
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