FRANKFORT, Ky. – To help honor the now 5,000 Kentuckians lost to COVID-19 and the sacrifices of Kentuckians during the pandemic, Gov. Andy Beshear today launched the Team Kentucky COVID-19 Memorial Fund, which will help make a permanent memorial on Capitol grounds a reality.
Beshear first announced plans for the memorial during a ceremony in Frankfort on Saturday, March 6, that honored the Kentuckians lost to COVID-19 since the first commonwealthcase was confirmed March 6, 2020.
“This memorial is an opportunity for willing Kentuckians to help honor the memory of those who died because of this virus as well as honor the sacrifices made by all Kentuckians during this terrible pandemic,” the governor said. “This memorial will also remind future generations of the hardships that the entire commonwealth endured during this difficult time and the sacrifices we all made to overcome it.”
Contributions can be made in the name of a lost loved one or friend or in the name of someone who has sacrificed and stepped up during the pandemic.
Any money remaining in the fund will be used to help reimburse a portion of burial and funeral costs for the families of Kentuckians who died due to COVID-19.
The website teamkycovidmemorial.ky.gov accepts donations and provides more information about how to make a tax-deductible donation. Soon, there will be a call made for artists to encourage them to submit ideas and proposals on the design of the permanent monument.
Throughout the year, Beshear, First Lady Britainy Beshear and Lt. Gov. Jacqueline Coleman have hosted memorial ceremonies that have included lighting the Capitol dome and state floral clock green as well as the laying of wreaths. Most recently, they joined faith leaders and families of those lost to plant nearly 5,000 American flags on the Capitol lawn to remember each Kentuckians lost to COVID-19.
More Kentuckians have died due to COVID-19 than died in combat during World War I, the Korean War, the Vietnam War and the Gulf War combined.