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Family, friends to honor loved ones at COVID Memorial Day event in Tempe

You can stop by the Arizona Heritage Center in Tempe from 5 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday.
Published: Mar. 6, 2022 at 8:38 PM MST
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TEMPE, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -- The Arizona Historical Society and Marked by COVID will host an event to honor COVID Memorial Day for the second year in a row. There will be several speakers, and health professionals will focus on the pandemic’s impact on hospitals in Arizona.

Others will speak about a family member or friend they lost to the virus. More than 27,000 Arizonans lost their lives to COVID-related complications over the past two years. The COVID Memorial quilt will be on display. It has 24 panels from all over the world to showcase the memory of hundreds of people that died.

Charles Krebbs was in the hospital for a month from July to August 2020, and he was on a ventilator before his life support was removed. His daughter Tara says grieving his loss during a pandemic has been difficult.

“They’re people, not numbers. My father was a person, and he is loved, and he is missed; I still get weepy, and it’s been almost two years now,” she said. “Grieving silently and not being able to express your loss is just so traumatic.”

Tara says events like this are important so people can support one another. You can stop by the Arizona Heritage Center in Tempe from 5 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday.

Speakers will include:

  • Will Humble, Executive Director for the Arizona Public Health Association
  • Raymond Embry, lifelong healthcare industry entrepreneur & Embry Health CEO
  • Dr. Carmen Hill-Mekoba, Chief Nursing Officer Embry Health
  • Leezie Kim, Chief Legal Counsel, Fox Restaurant Concepts

Visuals will include:

  • Joyce Bailey, a COVID survivor, will sing as a floral heart is placed in front of the podium where pictures of Arizonans lost to COVID will be on display. Attendees will be invited to bring photos and share their stories.
  • On display for COVID Memorial Day will be 24 panels—submitted from all over the world—of the Covid Memorial Quilt as a living memorial to all those who have died from COVID-19.