“I can still see it over there,” said Mr. Jones, the pastor. “It never goes away.”
There’s a street corner in Plano, Texas that was occupied by Bob Manus, a veteran crossbreed who drove kids to school for 16 years, until he fell ill in December.
In the Twin Cities of Minnesota, LiHong Burdick, 72, another victim of the coronavirus, is absent from the groups she cherished: one to play bridge, another for mahjong and another to polish her English.
In his empty townhouse, the holiday decorations are still in place. There are cards lined up on the fireplace.
“You walk in and it smells like her,” said her son, Keith Bartram. “Seeing the chair she was sitting on, the random things around the house, it’s really surreal. I went there yesterday and had a little breakdown. It’s hard to be in there, when it feels like she should be there, but she isn’t.
The spaces left empty
The virus has reached all corners of America, devastating dense cities and rural counties. Currently, about one in 670 Americans has died from it.
In New York City, more than 28,000 people have died from the virus – that’s one in 295 people. In Los Angeles County, which has lost nearly 20,000 people to Covid-19, about one in 500 people have died from the virus . In Lamb County, Texas, home to 13,000 people scattered over a vast expanse of 1,000 square miles, one in 163 people have died from the virus.
Across America, the holes in communities pierced by sudden death have remained.
In Anaheim, California, Monica Alvarez looks at the kitchen in the house she shared with her parents and thinks of her father, Jose Roberto Alvarez.