GLENDALE, AZ — A Valley organization is helping families commemorate the lives of the loved ones they lost this year from COVID-19.
Families can request holiday cards through the Marked By COVID organization, and people can also send cards to those dealing with loss. This will be the first Christmas without more than 7,000 Arizonans.
“As we reach 300,000 lives lost to COVID, many of our top elected officials still refuse to acknowledge the scale of our individual and collective loss," the organization's website states.
Along with the holiday cards, Arizonans who lost someone, like Tara Krebbs, are planning to show a visual representation of the more than 7,000 Arizonans who have died.
Krebbs and Marked By COVID will hang stockings to show the number of people who have died.
Krebbs shared a video on social media of her mother receiving dozens of cards from strangers.
“It’s amazing, that tiny bit of kindness, and the handwritten notes saying, 'I’ll be with you,'” said Krebbs, “At one point, she stopped to take a break and said, ‘Oh my gosh, I feel so loved right now.’”
TY to everyone that sent my mom Christmas cards & gifts. First time I’ve seen her really smile in 4+ months.— Tara Krebbs (@Tara_Krebbs) December 11, 2020
She was so moved to see that people care. She said “I feel so surrounded by love.” And that is everything.
I love you. ❤️@MarkedByCovid @NicoleSGrigg @oliviafierro pic.twitter.com/AZoQbNdDkF
Krebbs said her father, Charles Henry Krebbs of Glendale, died during the summer surge, on July 11.
Krebbs's father couldn’t breathe and her mother had to call an ambulance.
“He walked out with the ambulance and told her that he loved her, and he would be home, and then she never saw him again,” Krebbs said.
The paper stockings will have names and faces of those who have died, but unfortunately the numbers are rising.
Over the past three days, there were nearly 400 newly-reported deaths by Arizona’s Department of Health Services.
“There’s so many families, over 7,000 right now, that will not only be staying home for Christmas this year, but they will be celebrating without one of the members of their family, and not just this Christmas but every Christmas from now,” said Krebbs.
To learn more about sending or receiving a card, click here.