THEY WERE not simply names on a list. They were us.
The New York Times HAS paid a powerful tribute to America’s coronavirus victims with a front-page that lists obituaries from across the US.
Over 98,000 Americans have already died as a result of COVID-19, with that figure expected to reach over 100,000 in the coming days and weeks.
In an attempt to highlight the overwhelming loss of human life at the heart of those staggering figures, The New York Times decided to use Sunday’s edition of the newspaper to offer a glimpse of the personal stories behind each of the people lost to coronavirus.
Under the headline: “US deaths near 100,000, an incalculable loss”, came six columns of names and descriptions culled from obituaries across the US.
“They Were Not Simply Names on a List. They Were Us,” the sub-headline read.
What followed was an attempt by the newspaper’s design team to convey what they saw as the "vastness and variety of lives lost".
Lives like that of 94-year-old Bucky Pizzarelli from New Jersey, a "master of jazz guitar" or 65-year-old Mary Virginia McKeon of Chicago who "devoured art in every medium".
A “rich tapestry” of human life, the front page celebrated the likes of 81-year-old Alan Lund, from Washington, who carved out a career and life as a conductor with “the most amazing ear”.
There was also room for “one-man army” Almazo Moran, a 65-year-old of New York City and Coby Adolph, a 44-year-old “entrepreneur and adventurer” from Chicago.
An incredibly powerful and necessary remembrance of lives lost before their time, the front page drew widespread praise on social media with Piers Morgan among those to hail the impact of the piece.
"Incredibly powerful front page of @nytimes,” he wrote on Twitter.
“Zoom in to see how each name has a descriptive line about them too.
“Real people who led real, often extraordinary lives. Statistics, however awful, don’t properly tell the coronavirus story — this stunning piece of journalism does.”
Incredibly powerful front page of @nytimes. Zoom in to see how each name has a descriptive line about them too. Real people who led real, often extraordinary lives. Statistics, however awful, don’t properly tell the coronavirus story - this stunning piece of journalism does. 👇 pic.twitter.com/D9GGzJ5ijN
— Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) May 24, 2020
The front page comes as the US continues to cautiously reopen on a state-by-state basis.
At the time of writing an estimated 1.6 million cases of coronavirus have been confirmed in the US.