‘Hoppy’ temporarily leaves Bridge Street spot
Still recovering after knee surgery
— As travelers pass over the bridge on Bridge Street, they may notice the absence of a familiar face: William “Hoppy” Hammond.
For almost two decades, Hammond has been known to wave and smile to people as they pass him on the bridge — in fact, he’s become so identified by lo-
cal residents that the town erected a plaque in his honor for his contributions to the town’s image — but he’s been absent from his post the past few weeks.
Hammond has taken a break due to a knee replacement surgery on his left knee. He underwent surgery at Wilmington University on Sept. 26 and is currently attending physical therapy at ATI Physical Therapy in Delaware, he said.
During his recovery, Hammond said he’s received about 10 cards, in- cluding a card from the town, as well as a basket from the church he attends. When he first received the cards, Hammond said it was a “good feeling” for him and he appreciates all of the love and support he has received from the community.
“It’s just wonderful,” he said. “Just to know somebody cares and thinks about you. I’m all about that and showing some kindness and love. I’m all for it.”
needs the time to recuperate from his surgery and go through physical therapy, he doesn’t like taking such a long break. He doesn’t have an exact date when he will return though because his doctors have to clear him to drive first.
“I’m sorry I have to take a break, especially this long,” Hammond said. “It’s something when you miss a day or two, but for weeks and weeks, it’s not good.”
But as he recovers, his daughters said they too appreciate all the love and support the community has given to their father.
“I feel wonderful and I think it lifts his morale and helps him to have a speedier recovery,” said his daughter, Donna. “He misses everybody out on the bridge.”
Her younger sister, Cree, said she’s also been touched by all the support their dad has received — and this isn’t the first time. She recalled the time people were worried about Hammong because he was gone for a few days to attend her law school graduation several years ago, as well. People were asking where he had gone and if he was OK, she said.
“It warms my heart that people care enough that they are concerned about him,” she said.
For his part, Hammond said he can’t wait to get back out there and greet people as they enter town.
“I miss them and being out there too,” he said. “I can’t get well fast enough to get back out there.”
Hammond said he particularly misses interacting with the people that pass by during his routine, which began with his daily bike rides around town.
“I miss them and what they do for me,” he said. “It’s an uplifting, heartfelt thing to me. I just feel wonderful when I see somebody wave or smile or somebody hollers out ‘I love you’ and ‘We’re thinking of you’ or whatever it is. I just feel great.”
Anyone wishing to send Hammond a card, can send it to 235 E. Main St., Elkton, MD, 21921.
William “Hoppy” Hammond hasn’t been at his usual spot on Bridge Street in recent weeks as he recovers from knee surgery.
William “Hoppy” Hammond smiles at his usual spot on the Bridge Street Bridge in Elkton, a place he has been absent from following knee surgery.