Guest Opinion: Council Should Honor Local Residents Who Have Fallen to COVID-19

“Show me the manner in which a nation cares for its dead and I will measure with mathematical exactness the tender mercies of its people, their respect for the laws of the land, and their loyalty to high ideals.” 
—Sir William Ewart Gladstone

As of April 17, 2020, the Pasadena Health Department has reported that 20 of our fellow citizens have been struck down by this deadly virus.

We know little about them. An age range, between 49 and 96.  An underlying health condition. They were in a long-term health facility such as a nursing home or an assisted care facility. They were there either an employee or as a patient.

Beyond this nothing else is known.

Across our city families are grieving for their loved ones. The fallen left behind sons and daughters, grandsons and granddaughters, nieces and nephews, and good friends. They came from all walks of life, all faiths, and every possible background. As the fatality rate grows many more will die.

They cannot be remembered just as a statistic. When a member of our Armed Forces is killed in service or our nation they are never forgotten.

Nemo resideo, no one left behind.

They are always remembered, they are never forgotten.  So too must our fallen to this virus be remembered and never forgotten just like a soldier who died in battle.

Our nation and our city are at war against this deadly virus. Our first responders, medical professionals, and essential service workers are on the front lines right now in this fight. But we are all in this fight together along with those on the front lines of this epic struggle. We are all doing our part staying at home, wearing a mask when we go out, observing social distancing, and following all other precautions. And when one of us falls in this war we must remember them, not as a statistic but as a fellow human being who shared the same hopes and dreams that all of us share.

During the American Revolution Thomas Paine once said, “These are the times that try men’s souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands by it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman.”

And now each and every one of us must be a winter soldier in this fight, standing shoulder to shoulder.

More will die and they must always be remembered.

We’re all in this together. Our parents and grandparents survived other great calamities by sheer determination and grit.  We will survive this current crisis as well because we are Americans and proud residents of that shining city on a hill called Pasadena.