A new website was created to help memorialize Kentuckians lost to COVID-19 and give family members and friends an outlet to share stories.
“We hear numbers an awful lot, so this is not a statistic, it's a story,” said Martha Greenwald, the website’s founder.
Already, there are several stories of family members, friends, coaches, teachers and other loved ones published on WhoWeLostKY.org. As a writer who has lost friends to the virus, Greenwald says putting emotions into words can be therapeutic.
“With the absence of funeral and memorial services due to social isolation, people haven't had a chance to say a lot of what normally would have been said in public in a different way,” she said. “So, this provides an opportunity for people to get a story out there that they didn't get to tell or they wish they could have told.”
If you're not sure where to start, there's a writing toolbox to help you gather ideas. With days specifically tied to certain people, like Mother's Day this weekend, Greenwald says keeping a loved one’s memory alive can be a way to celebrate them after they're gone.
“We want to make sure that people are remembered because with the virus declining and vaccinations here, people are starting to forget already how many people died and the people who are left behind really feel left behind, because they can't share that joy,” she said.
In an effort to make the website a safe space for people to share memories, Greenwald says no one can leave comments or messages on the stories.
She also says she plans to expand on the website, including one day offering a print collection of stories on the site, as a way to further memorialize these loved ones.