The evening before President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President–elect Kamala Harris take their oaths of office, the Biden Inaugural Committee will host a nationwide COVID-19 memorial to remember those lost to the pandemic.
On Tuesday, January 19, join us for a nationwide moment of unity as we honor and remember the 400,000 American lives lost to COVID-19. #COVIDMemorial— Biden Inaugural Committee (@BidenInaugural) January 18, 2021
As the United States exceeds 400,000 deaths from COVID-19, tackling the pandemic will present one of the greatest challenges for the new administration. Last week, Biden announced a $1.9 trillion emergency relief plan and said he would mobilize the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the National Guard, community health centers and pharmacies to ramp up COVID-19 vaccine distribution.
The national memorial will take place January 19 at 5:30 p.m. Eastern Time. The event will include a live ceremony that will feature the first-ever lighting of the Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool with 400 lights to honor those who have died. Cardinal Wilton Gregory, the Archbishop of Washington, will deliver an invocation. Watch the event on Facebook, YouTube or Twitter.
Individuals and families are encouraged to light a candle in a window and ring bells. Cities are invited to light up landmark buildings and ring church bells.
In New York City, the Empire State Building will flash the red “heartbeat” that became all too familiar during the height of the city’s COVID-19 crisis last spring. The Space Needle in Seattle and Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport will also be illuminated.
More than 384,000 Americans have died from COVID-19. On January 19th, we’ll honor the lives lost and mourn with communities across our country forever changed from this deadly virus.https://t.co/zM8fuRJHIG— Kamala Harris (@KamalaHarris) January 14, 2021
“The inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President–elect Kamala Harris represents the beginning of a new national journey,” Presidential Inaugural Committee communications director Pili Tobar said in a press release. “However, in the midst of a pandemic—when so many Americans are grieving the loss of family, friends, and neighbors —it is important that we honor those who have died, reflect on what has been one of the more challenging periods in the nation’s history and renew our commitment to coming together to end the pandemic and rebuild our nation.”