WILMINGTON, Del. — After the U.S. COVID-19 pandemic death toll passed 100,000 yesterday, U.S. Senators Chris Coons (D-Del.), Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii), Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) renewed their calls to pay tribute to the victims of COVID-19 with a moment of silence at 12 noon on Monday, June 1, 2020. Last week, the senators introduced legislation calling for a moment of silence.
“Our country is experiencing a collective trauma of historic proportions, and we should come together as a nation for a moment of silence, prayer, and reflection to mourn the friends, neighbors, and loved ones we’ve lost to this pandemic,” said Senator Coons. “Just as we’re working together to provide health care and economic relief, we also need to provide each other emotional and spiritual support, and this moment of silence is one way for our nation to begin that important process.”
“The nation must mark this dark moment with unity and clarity,” said Senator Schatz. “At this time of almost unimaginable pain, it is essential that we pause to honor every life lost, and that we grieve together.”
“Over the past few months, more than 300 Tennesseans have lost their lives to COVID-19. For the families and friends of the victims, nothing can replace their loved ones whose time was cut short by this virus. We are praying for them and for those that continue to battle COVID-19 during this difficult time for our country,” said Senator Blackburn.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has devastated our nation. Far too many families have seen their loved ones suffer. Due to strict isolation measures, most who have lost someone to the disease have been robbed of their final farewell at the hospital. Many have also been unable to have proper memorials to honor the people they have lost,” said Senator Murkowski. “These impacts cannot be undone, but my heart is with each person, family, and community that is mourning. As a nation, together, we grieve the lives that have been taken by this dreadful disease.”
“Sadly, the United States will soon have lost 100,000 American lives to COVID-19. We cannot forget that behind these numbers are families mourning the loss of a parent, a child, a spouse, a friend,” said Senator Durbin. “On June 1, we should all take a moment to remember the lives lost to this global pandemic and stand with their families in honoring their memory.”
“We all mourn for the lives taken by COVID-19. As we reach this sad milestone, we ought to join in recognizing our health workers, transit workers, sanitation workers, mail couriers, delivery drivers, grocery store clerks, military, law enforcement, and others on the front lines of the crisis, who put their health at risk to keep us safe and provide for our communities. Their dignity and compassion in the face of tragedy gives us hope,” said Senator Whitehouse. “We should also recognize the loved ones of those lost, who often grieve in solitude without funerals or even a proper bedside goodbye.”
The Coons-Schatz-Blackburn-Murkowski bill is also cosponsored by U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), Michael Bennet (D-Colo.), Tina Smith (D-Minn.), Tammy Duckworth (Ill.), Tim Kaine (D-Va.), Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.), Patty Murray (D-Wash.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Jon Tester (D-Mont.), Ed Markey (D-Mass.), Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), and Cory Booker (D-N.J.).