Arizona resident Kristin Urquiza, who lost her father to the virus, was a key advocate for a COVID-19 Memorial Day both nationally and throughout the state. The nonprofit group “Marked by COVID,” which Uriquiza co-founded, helped coordinate efforts throughout Coconino County to memorialize the day of March 1, according to the organization’s website.
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The written proclamation makes reference to many of the virus’ devastating effects, noting the “bold actions” taken by local and state governments, health departments and public servants, as well as public health efforts targeted to prevent the spread of the virus.
In response to the rapid spread of COVID-19 and stay-at-home orders, the proclamation honors essential workers that have “stepped up to provide critical services to help protect our communities and save lives, sacrificing their own health and safety.”
“Each life lost to COVID-19 mattered and leaves a hole in the hearts of loved ones, family members and surrounding community,” the proclamation states.
Last week, Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey joined Joe Biden in ordering flags to fly at half-mast for five days after the country passed 500,000 deaths on Feb 22. All Arizonans, including private citizens and residents, were encouraged to participate in the gesture.
“We mourn each and every life lost — loved ones, family, friends, neighbors. Every life is precious, and we will continue to work hard to protect more Arizonans and overcome the devastating effects of the pandemic,” Ducey said in a statement.