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Church bells chime 224 times, Richmond plants trees to remember COVID victims

Posted at 5:45 PM, Mar 12, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-12 18:07:24-05

RICHMOND, Va. -- Two oak trees planted outside the Powhatan Community Center in Richmond’s East End Friday symbolize rebirth and commemorate those lost during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“This pandemic has adversely impacted every single person in our city,” Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney said. “Richmonders have lost jobs, homes, and the simple peace and security of being able to live their lives without the fear of becoming deathly ill. But most significantly, many of us have lost our friends, co-workers, family members and loved ones – our fellow Richmonders – who cannot be replaced."

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In addition to the tree-planting ceremony, the bells at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church on East Grace Street chimed 224 times – once for every life lost in the city.

“On this somber anniversary, it’s only fitting that we remember these Richmonders and continue to honor their legacy by doing everything we can to love and support each other, by observing the guidelines that can help keep us safe," the mayor said.

The mayor also proclaimed Friday COVID-19 Day of Remembrance in Richmond.