On January 19 at 5:30pm (local time), we invite Americans across the country to come together for a national moment of unity and remembrance to honor the lives lost to COVID-19.
In Washington, D.C., we will host a ceremony with President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Harris, featuring the first-ever lighting of the Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool to honor and remember those who have died. You can watch live on Biden Inaugural social media channels.
We encourage Americans to join us in lighting a candle in your window for this nationwide moment of remembrance. Share the word and invite your family, friends, and loved ones to join us for the COVID-19 Memorial.
I am so relieved, as I am sure you all are, to have people in office who understand the gravity of the pandemic. And they have a plan.
May this memorial be the beginning of a path forward for all of us and healing for those who have lost so much.
While we wait, some photos from the mall:
So am I supposed to light my candle at 5:30 MY time, or 5:30 EST? It sounded originally like it was supposed to be the latter. No worries–I’m happy to light a candle in the darkness, and in memoriam, no matter the time zone.
The photos of the mall are stunning.
@narya: I think the candle lighting is local time…so 5:30 your time.
MSNBC is showing some beautiful “golden hour” visuals of the mall and Capitol.
I’m starting to tear up just looking at the flags. I have a feeling I’m going to just start bursting into tears at random intervals for a while as I get used to the idea that we have a POTUS inviting us to experience things AS A COUNTRY again.
Putting out the flags was genius, and looking at the sea of them and knowing that twice as many Americans have died of Covid19 is sobering.
@Miss Bianca: I’m probably not going to make it through Amazing Grace.
When he was descending the plane, I felt an emotion that has been sorely lacking during the trump years. I felt proud.
Seeing the scale of death as represented by the flags (as opposed to numbers on charts) is horrifying.
2:30 Pacific? Nope. Won’t be home from work. I wish they’d think of us more when it comes to national participation things like this.
The barriers I can understand. Don’t like them but can understand them.
The razor wire is, IMHO, a giant step too far. Setting sun glinting off that creates a picture which cannot be made anything but disheartening.
Stunning, creative, and ingenious
The day the music
@JPL: Proud! And excited. And thankful.
It’s going to take a long time to recover from the scourge of Trumpism, but I feel it starting.
I have a candle, but I’m realizing I have no matches, nor a lighter. Sigh.
The first sentence says “local time,” so that’s 5:30 for you, too.
@Feathers: Due to the critter count here, all my candles are battery operated. Had to put out one too many cat-tail fire.
Just hearing sane decent people and knowing that in less than day they’ll be running things is a balm to the soul.
@TaMara (HFG): me neither
I do have to say that it is briefly hilarious—but still horrifying—to see a cat with that “What’s that burning smell?” look on their face.
@Feathers: Propane torch? Flint? Two sticks to rub together? 10 watt laser? Fresnel lens for focusing sunlight?
i went ahead and lit mine early. An extra hour of candlelight won’t fix a damn thing, but there it is.
Oh, god. Those lanterns all lighting.
And now she’s singing Hallelulah.
Oh, jeez, I am gonna be a soggy mess.
OMG, the luminarias … and now Hallelujah… I’m not going to get any work done.
And Boston lights…and NYC lights…
Dammit, this is the kind of stuff that a functional government would have already done. That said, it’s so refreshing to have adults in charge again.
I didn’t make it through Halleluia. I’m a blubbering mess at this point.
I’m so glad the weather cooperated.
Oh, good, all the networks are covering it, not just cable…
West of the Cascades
“If there are any angels in heaven, they’re nurses. We know that from our family’s experiences.”
Lori Marie Key’s rendition of “Amazing Grace” took me from sniffling to bawling. A soon-to-be-President taking a moment to connect with her eloquently … we are gaining so much at noon tomorrow.
So beautiful. Basically a perfect memorial in its simplicity and humanity.
Short, sweet and not about him.
No, it’s 5:30 LOCAL time. You’re fine.
tearing up at the words and the music, but also full of rage that Trump murdered 1/2 a million people
I almost said ‘it’s beyond belief’ but because I know what Republicans are and what Trump is, it’s not beyond belief at all
I had a cat that was forever setting his eyebrows and whiskers to smouldering. Such a lovely aroma…
What Have The Romans Ever Done for Us?
Very fitting tribute.
Candle lit, handbells sounded 410 times. Several friends are sounding the bells (big ones) at old north church. (they are housemates to eliminate risk, I would have been there otherwise). I do hope they found a band to ring the congressional set. (10 bells, copies of the set at Westminster, a bicentennial gift from the UK. Installed in what was then the old post office, now the Trump hotel).
Presidents can do that?
Oh my God, that was beautiful and pitch perfect. I have hope.
We have waited a year for our President to acknowledge and help us mourn our dead. Thank you, Joe.
Mike in NC
Guessing there will be zero candles lit at Mar-A-Lardass.
I can’t help but think of all the candles as a huge national smudging.
Not too much. Assholes are afoot.
I’m old. Who’s singing Hallelujah?
The luminaria are beautiful. And the nation’s great monuments in the golden crepuscular light.
@Miss Bianca: I have been doing that all day today. The Memorial broke the dam, but it’s been trickling all day. The relief of the departure of that awful excuse for anything is affecting me more than I thought it would. I thought I was too angry to cry. Joe knows….he’s giving us permission to grieve and he’s grieving with us. What a difference!
@VeniceRiley: They are saying LOCAL time. So whenever it’s 5:30 where you are, that’s the time for this.
Lovely thought. Smudging our country.
@debbie: I’m old too, but I think it’s Beyoncé.
@SiubhanDuinne: YES! Like burning a forest of sage!
Google has saved us both! It was gospel singer Yolanda Adams.
@JanieM: It was Yolanda Adams; gospel singer.
@Miss Bianca: I hear you. Having a president who allows us to mourn our dead instead of deny them is such a relief… and a heartbreaker that our country has been denied it this long. I’ve been crying at random intervals since November 8.
Do you have a gas range? Light a burner & light the candle from there. Even an electric burner might work if you turn it up high & hold the wick to a coil.
Cool! So much for my contemporary culture cred (which was nil to begin with). I wonder why they didn’t identify her.
Oh well, off to find some more tissues.
Working, so only able to take a peek at this, but it is moving, thoughtful.
@Raven: I just watched the clip above (Love It or List It is on the TV).
Biden was perfect.
“In order for us to heal, we must remember.”
Very moving, very well done.
I think what really struck me was that at no time did we ever stop to mourn the 400k Americans who have died from this disease.
I feel ashamed as a country that it took us so long to be able to do that.
@dmsilev: Once I was at the forge and no one had a lighter or matches….so we ended up using a flame cutter to light the forge. Total overkill.
Amazing Grace always brings me to tears. And Hallelujah is worse. (better?)
Those lanterns are beautiful.
What a great way to think about it. Now I’m definitely going to find a candle instead of just putting my little Christmas tree light in the window
ETA: And what a lovely little service. Short, sweet, to the point. I’m all teary all over again!
Steve in the ATL
@NotMax: oh, like you never wrapped a guy in razor wire, locked him in the trunk of a car, and set the car on fire.
hmmm…or are zhenia gogolia and I the only Russian mobsters on B-J?
@JPL: what, groveling/bootlicking/sucking-up don’t count???
@Feathers: Do you have a 9-volt battery and a safety pin or needle that you are willing to sacrifice?
Drape the needle across the terminals and watch it heat up like an old school car cigarette lighter.
I commented on FB that one way you know the Orange Slime God and his worshippers are evil is because they could never produce such a moment of healing and grace.
@cain: I’m ashamed that we have so many who explain it away, can’t be bothered, or think it’s okay.
Wow, beautiful service. Thank you.
I see this was answered. It’s Yolanda Adams — she also sang at Aretha Franklin’s funeral.
Biden said her name at the beginning of his remarks.
I can’t be the only one who noticed that every speaker except Uncle Joe was a person of color? It’s like an in-your-face repudiation of the Twelfth Night Insurrection.
@dmsilev: paper towel twist, applied to stove. Ask me how I know!
I’m at work here in Colorado, but we’re right next door to a grocery store, so I bought a candle and a lighter and put it in the office window (5:40 here by the time I got back, lit it, etc.).
I love all these pictures so much. I thought the lights and flags on the Mall were inspired. And the COVID memorial was just enough, moving and beautiful and spare so you could feel the loss.
I also lit my candle and rang my little bell.
@Steve in the ATL:
I have seen a man climb a six foot plus high chain link fence with razor wire strung on both sides of the top, in bare feet, without cutting himself or any clothing. I believe that he’d done this before as he took his shoes off before climbing. Before this I’d thought razor wire was pretty much the last word in keeping the rife raff out. He didn’t even look like he worked at it at all.