MOBILE, Ala (WKRG) – As the nation stopped tUESDAY to recognize the 400,000 people killed by COVID-19, Mobile remembered its 550 coronavirus deaths.
550 bags were placed in Tricentennial Park. They carried the names of those killed by the virus in Mobile County.
Among the victims, Willie McCall, a popular youth coach who died in July.
“I don’t want him to ever be forgotten,” said his mother Sharon Reed. “It’s overwhelming to know this has happened to all these people. You hear about it in other cities, but when it knocks on your door, you realize it’s your neighbors, your friends.”
Mobile was one of hundreds of cities that recognized its covid-deaths Tuesday, including Washington where a memorial was set up along the Reflecting Pool near the Lincoln Memorial.
In Mobile, volunteers set the bags out around 4:30 in the afternoon.
“We chose 4:30 for a reason,” said City Councilman Fred Richardson. “The sun begins to set at 4:30. And for the 550 people who died in Mobile the sun has already set in their lives.”
As darkness descended upon the park, the bags were lit.
“A lot of families are going thru a lot of turmoil with this COVID-19 ,” said Shonnda Smith of the City’s Parks and Recreation Department which helped organize the event. “It’s just to honor and recognize that we see you and that and we’re praying for you and want you to be okay.”
The City planted a tree at the park and Smith says will plant about 175 more across Mobile in honor of COVID-19 victims.