US Reaches Death Milestone

Zephyr Lipman-Wulf, Writer

In mid-February of this year, the United States surpassed more than 500,000 deaths since the beginning of the ongoing COVID-19 battle. This has left our nation’s family in utter shock and misery. No other country has even come close to the U.S.’s half a million losses during the pandemic. More people have died from the Coronavirus in the United States than in three wars put together. In just the past five weeks, the virus killed at least 100,000 United States residents. Back in January, during this five week period, the virus was the leading cause of death. It overpassed cancer, heart disease, and other deadly health conditions. 

The death milestone comes at a moment in time where virus cases are significantly down. While vaccines are slowly but meticulously being given out, the death rate is decreasing at the same time; however, this doesn’t mean that we’re in the clear yet. New types of the unpredictable virus could surface at any time. It could take months, let alone a full year before we are able to contain the pandemic. 

Even though case amounts are going down, about 2,000 people still die from the virus everyday. This statistic has gone down by ⅓ since mid-January, where its peak was 3,000 people dying per day. With new infections and variants of the virus surfacing, the United States still has a very long way to go before the pandemic is over. We can sadly expect another 100,000 citizens to pass away by June of this year.. 

Each individual death has left family members, friends, and neighbors in mourning. We can observe gaps and empty spaces in what used to be full, enriched communities. Many are finding themselves living in what is now an empty house or sleeping in a bed that used to be occupied by two. The large quantity of deaths has created a ripple effect of grief and loss throughout the country. This creates what feels like multiple losses but are actually just  “secondary losses”, when we feel loss of confidence and security.  As human beings, we tend to focus on the actual death rather than the grief we experience afterwards. 

We as a country hope to see the death rate decline in the coming months. All there is to do is continue to stay safe as we have been doing. Nonetheless, this entire pandemic has been horrific and devastating. We must stay strong together and not let our differences come between us creating more issues.