Photo Courtesy of Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office
Throughout the ceremony, images of New Yorkers lost to the pandemic were projected on to the Brooklyn Bridge.
By Michael V. Cusenza
On Sunday, the one-year anniversary of the first known COVID-19 death in NYC, Mayor Bill de Blasio and New Yorkers from across the five boroughs honored the more than 30,000 Big Apple neighbors lost during the pandemic.
“Shoulder to shoulder, one for another, we will bring our city back together,” de Blasio said. “The people walking around today, they carry the hearts of those we’ve lost with them. The moms, the dads, the grandparents, all that was great about them, all that was warm, their souls continue on in their sons and daughters and then their grandchildren. And so, it is to all of us to do something very simple, very beautiful, very powerful. It is time to make them proud.”
Throughout the ceremony, images of New Yorkers lost to the pandemic were projected on to the Brooklyn Bridge with creative direction and video design provided by Brian Tovar, Jason Sherwood, and Alex Basco Koch of Livesight and thanks to a partnership with The City’s MISSING THEM project. Event support was provided by iDEKO.
“Over 30,000 New Yorkers succumbed to this terrible pandemic, and because of this virus, families have been unable to properly bury their loved ones. My heart breaks for those who were taken too soon, and the families whose lives will never be the same. We take this day to honor their memories and commit to building a more just and equitable society,” Rep. Grace Meng (D-Flushing) said.
“Today marks the one-year anniversary of the first known COVID-19 death in New York City. We have lost more than 30,000 of our fellow New Yorkers this past year, which has been absolutely devastating for thousands of families, including my own,” said City Councilwoman Adrienne Adams (D-Richmond Hill). “On March 26, 2020, my father was hospitalized for symptoms of what we thought was congestive heart failure, but was actually the coronavirus masquerading as his ongoing health condition. Little did I know that would be the last time I would look into his beautiful eyes. After almost two months of not being able to see him, hold his hand, or stroke his hair, we lost our beloved dad when he passed away on May 22 at Long Island Jewish Hospital. This remembrance means so much to my family and me, much like it does for everyone who lost a loved one due to COVID-19. During this citywide day of remembrance, we honor the memory of the more than 30,000 lives we lost to this deadly virus, including my father. They will never be forgotten.”
“We must never forget the more than 30,000 New Yorkers our city has lost to this dreadful virus, in a crisis that will forever define this era of the Big Apple. They were our friends, parents, siblings, neighbors and co-workers, of every age, race and creed. The memories of those we lost can inspire us and remind us, amid the hustle and bustle of a reborn New York City, that every moment is precious and that we must all work together as we rebuild,” added Councilman Bob Holden (D-Middle Village).