Oscar winner Allison Janney’s advice for fellow Daytonians gets DeWine’s attention

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Oscar winner Allison Janney has some good advice for “fellow Daytonians” during the coronavirus outbreak.

Friday afternoon, Ohio Gov. Mike Dewine tweeted a video of Janney with the caption: "We have to focus on what we can do, instead of what we can't do." Good advice from @AllisonBJanney, who was raised in #Dayton before taking several high-profile acting roles in shows like The West Wing & @MomCBS. #ThankYou, Allison! We're #InThisTogetherOhio!

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The video shows the Oakwood-raised Janney sitting on steps at home, addressing Daytonians directly:

“Hello fellow Daytonians! My name is Allison Janney and I grew up here in Dayton. I’m going to answer a few questions about coronavirus.” She continues, now reading a question from a piece of paper, “Why is this important and what are you doing to flatten the curve and stop the spread?”

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Janney answers: “I think it’s vitally important that we flatten the curve because we don’t want to overburden medical facilities. That’s number 1.”

“What I’m personally doing is staying home as much as possible. I’m being vigilant about washing my hands. And soap is all you need. That’s the first line of defense. If your hands are as dry and cracked as mine do, you’re probably doing the right thing. So keep doin’ it.”

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ExploreTwo artists with Dayton roots were honored at the 2017 "Walk of Fame" luncheon. Pictured are cartoonist Cathy Guisewite (center) and actress Allison Janney (right.) On the left is Janney's proud mama, Macy Janney. CONTRIBUTED

She also gives advice on staying in touch. “Make sure you reach out to friends. Make at least three to four calls a day. If you have an elderly neighbor, reach out to them, see if you can help with groceries. Anything you can do to help those that are in need, or more need than you are at this time.”

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The short talk takes a somber turn when she admits “Everyone is struggling. It’s a scary and very lonely time.” Janey offers some hope and practical advice too. “I think we have to focus on what we can do instead of what we can’t do. So for instance, I am keeping up with my meditation practice. I think it’s a great thing to do. If you’ve never done it, it might be very helpful during this time.”

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The video ends with #InThisTogetherOhio. It ties in with Gov. Dewine's new "Together Ohio" campaign. His administration has added this new section to Ohio's coronavirus website. Ohio residents are encouraged to email together@governor.ohio.gov to send the state information about supplies they want to donate, or other ways they can help.

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It’s not surprising that Janney would want to comfort the Dayton community. Even though she’s become hugely successful in her acting career, she’s remained connected with her roots here. When she became the first Daytonian to win an Oscar, her father said, “She loves Dayton and always talks about all the support it gives her.”

Janney is best known for her roles on "Mom," "The West Wing" and "Masters of Sex" and "I, Tonya." Janney graduated from the Miami Valley School. Janney earned the Oscar for her role as LaVona Harding, figure skater Tonya Harding's chain-smoking, abusive mother in the dramatic dark comedy "I, Tonya."
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