Drawings by RA Friedman

With Love: Messages to those lost to COVID

The tragedy of COVID is huge but also personal – people lost that we’ll never get back, and we never got to say goodbye.  This is the chance for closure for those left behind, and to make sure the lost stories are told.

*COVID-19 has killed more than half a million people in the U.S. and more than 3,000 in Philadelphia. Often, we lose loved ones to COVID without getting to say goodbye. Sometimes the illness progresses too rapidly to even allow for a remote farewell. In other cases, family and friends of those who’ve fallen ill can Facetime, Zoom, or talk over the phone to let them know how much they are loved and will be missed. But it’s not the same — not by a longshot. 

We know that nothing can make up for that. But we also believe that keeping those final thoughts and sentiments bottled up can add another hardship. So we launched  WithLovePhilly.com to offer those who couldn’t have that in-person goodbye a chance to share what they would have said if they had been able to be by their loved one’s side.

We invite you to share that missed goodbye as we mark more than a year of living with COVID-19 in the Philadelphia area.

The drawings of loved ones lost to COVID are from R.A. Friedman and his Philadelphia COVID-19 Portrait Project.

Ezra Tischler to Grandpop Florencio Cruz

Ezra Tischler to Grandpop Florencio Cruz

Anonymous to her Mother

Anonymous to her Mother

Jenny Allen to Bill Strachan

Jenny Allen to Bill Strachan

Karl Zimmerman to Craig A. Newton

Karl Zimmerman to Craig A. Newton