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What you need to know for Thursday, Feb. 18, 2021

It's another day closer to the weekend.

SAINT PETERSBURG, Fla. — Good morning Tampa Bay! We made it to Friday Jr.

Here are today's top stories you need to know about. 

Rest in peace 🙏

A Pinellas County deputy was trying to protect others from being hurt when he was hit and killed by a suspected drunk driver Wednesday evening, the sheriff's office said. 

Deputy Michael Magli was trying to stop the accused drunk driver by putting stop sticks in the road. But, as he was putting them out the suspected drunk driver's truck "spun out, flipped over and very, very violently slammed into Deputy Magli and his cruiser,"  Pinellas County Sheriff's Bob Gualtieri said.

Magli was 30-years-old. He leaves behind his wife and two young children, his parents, and other family members. 

Magli began working with the sheriff's office in 2013.

Are masks the new normal? 😷

Masks are part of our everyday routine right now. Schools, planes and stores all require them. We know we probably won't have permanent mask mandates, but can mask-wearing become a habit for some people post-pandemic?

Doctors say it comes down to social responsibility. Wearing a mask is a way to protect those around you and it's a good idea, even if it's just a sniffle or the common cold.

While some people may choose to wear a mask from now on, it's not likely we'll see it here in the United States. Compared to other countries, Americans have been slow to accept mask mandates. 

RELATED: Life after COVID: Will people still wear masks after the pandemic?

Hanging up the mitt ⚾

Tim Tebow is retiring from baseball after five years as a minor leaguer with the New York Mets.  

The 2007 Heisman Trophy winner and former Florida Gator QB returned to baseball in 2016 for the first time since his junior year of high school and reached Triple-A.  

Tebow, a first-round draft pick by the Broncos in 2010, played QB for Denver over parts of two seasons. Tebow is best known for beating the Pittsburgh Steelers in the playoffs on Jan. 8, 2012, throwing an 80-yard touchdown to Demaryius Thomas in a shocking overtime win.

RELATED: Tim Tebow retires from baseball after five years with Mets