(WSVN) - To say 2020 had unusual problems would probably qualify as a huge understatement. From the crime of coughing in a person’s face to a restaurant owner getting a warning for taking a break in her own business. Help Me Howard with Patrick Fraser got so many one of a kind requests this year.

There will never be another year like 2020, and appropriately, South Floridians had problems they had never faced before.

Sandra Franco: “Coughed in his face so much so that my father can feel the heat of his breath on him.”

Sandra’s father had gone to the store wearing his mask and staying a few feet away from people until he met a jerk.

Sandra Franco: “And then decided to come back and do it maliciously for a second time, and my dad was like, ‘Listen, what are you doing?’ And then, he laughed in his face.”

When we talked to Sandra, her father was in quarantine, hoping the clown didn’t give him the coronavirus, which would have been a crime.

Sandra Franco: “I was very angry, to be honest with you, that someone would have such a dark soul to do that.”

Fortunately, Juan didn’t get COVID, and while legally, the cougher didn’t have a leg to stand on, COVID left Katia without a chair to sit in.

Katia Roque: “Can we have this table? Can my employees take their break there? Can the owners sit?”

When Miami-Dade restaurants were only allowed to seat customers outside, Katia kept a table inside her Munchie’s Cafe to sit and take a break. Nope, said code enforcement.

Katia Roque: “She simply said, ‘Listen, I’m doing my job. Don’t argue with me, and I have to give you the warning.'”

After we read the county order, we determined the inspector was wrong. Katia and her employees can sit at a table and take a break inside her restaurant.

Sue Chatlos: “Oh, I love sitting there. It’s wonderful.”

Sue loved sitting in her backyard looking through a gap in the fence as boats go down the canal until her neighbor blocked her view with his big Trump sign.

Sue Chatlos: “That property has over 100 feet of waterfront. He could have put it anywhere, but he put it right in front of the chairs.”

Sue was told her neighbor put his Trump sign there to get back at her because Sue was a big Joe Biden fan, flying her Dump Trump and Dogs Against Trump signs in her yard.

Sue Chatlos: “A lot of opinionated people in the area, which is good, for the most part.”

Legally, her neighbor won. He could put his Trump sign anywhere he wanted, but Sue won the bigger battle when Joe Biden was elected president.

Etta Harbin: “Right now, I need to know what to do. How do we inform the family? Because we want to be in compliance.”

When COVID crashed into our lives, Etta Harbin worried about her parishioners’ afterlife because the state and county COVID rules would only allow small gatherings for funerals in her church.

Etta Harbin: “There are families, immediate family members. What do you say to them? How do you tell them only 10?”

But then the governments concluded churches were essential and exempt from the rules, so Etta could have large socially distanced funerals.

From praying for souls…

Ana Karina Cespedes: “I finally got approved. They approved me for $24,200.”

To saving a business, Ana got a federal loan to help her small freelance company survive, but the bank the government used to handle her loan refused to give it to her.

Ana Karina Cespedes: “I’m paying back the SBA, so the bank has really nothing to do with it.”

We heard from several people like Ana who could not get the banks to release the government COVID money.

Legally though, they had to, and after we contacted the bank, they turned the money over to Ana.

Ana Karina Cespedes: “Thank you so much for everything that you do for us little people to fight the fight. For fighting this fight with me, I am eternally grateful.”

Glad we could help you out, Ana ’cause we try to help as many people as we can, and we all saw so many problems in 2020 we had never seen before and hopefully will never see again, ’cause no-one wants to relive the 2020 headaches.

Got a problem that’s nothing to sneeze about? Feel like you don’t have a prayer of solving it? Give us the sign and let us loan you our support.

Email: helpmehoward@wsvn.com
Reporter: Patrick Fraser at pfraser@wsvn.com
Miami-Dade: 305-953-WSVN
Broward: 954-761-WSVN

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