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Why this site is focused on young people

I know that proportionally there are way more COVID-19 related deaths in older populations, and they are no less tragic. In large part I would like to focus this archive on young people to direct attention and care to people who have lost a young child or have lost a friend at a very young age.

The mortality rate of young people infected with COVID-19 also illustrates an obscene injustice and oppression in the US (and I’m sure there are similar kinds of oppression globally). In September 2020 the CDC released a report that reveals that 78% of all people under 21 who have died from COVID-19 in the US at the time of the study are children of color:

Among 121 SARS-CoV-2–associated deaths among persons aged <21 years reported to CDC by July 31, 2020, 12 (10%) were infants and 85 (70%) were aged 10–20 years. Hispanic, non-Hispanic Black and non-Hispanic American Indian/Alaskan Native persons accounted for 94 (78%) of these deaths; 33% of deaths occurred outside of a hospital.

Read Report

In mentioning this information, I want to be careful not to continue a pattern of using the individual and devastating losses of these young people only as a point within an argument or storyline. This disparity does feel like important context for me, though, in understanding the gravity of the effects of white supremacy through hearing about the lives of these young people in the words of their family and friends.

How the tributes are made

Until this site is a majority user-submitted tributes, I am collecting and assembling information for each memorial myself from news articles and obituaries. I am trying to avoid pulling the sensationalist and invasive language I see on many news sites (interjections about the state or country’s response to the virus, turning peoples’ real devastating situations into clickbait). I try to take mostly quotes from family members and friends, share details that a family member said in an interview, and use photos that the family provided to a news outlet or organisation. I provide links to each source within the memorial.

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