BALTIMORE (WJZ) — More than 200,000 people have died from COVID-19 in the U.S. and the number of deaths in Maryland is approaching 4,000.

As the death count continues to rise as a result of the virus, one man wanted to make sure those people weren’t forgotten. So, he turned to social media.

Dar’yana Dyson, 15, of Baltimore; Arlene Chelsey, 78, of La Plata; Steven Murphy, 66, of Olney. These are just some of the faces of Marylanders who’ve lost their lives to COVID-19- everyday people who Alex Goldstein said shouldn’t be forgotten.

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“People need to know who these folks are even if they’re not household names,” Goldstein, Faces Of COVID account curator, said.

Goldstein started the Twitter account at the start of the pandemic.

“These abstract statistics about the number of folks that we were losing to this virus just felt cold and dehumanized in a lot of ways,” he said. “And trying to put a face and a name to some of those numbers was just an important way for me to process it.”

But Goldstein quickly found it also helped others. The account has more than 80,000 followers and has shared over 2,700 stories.

He not only finds the names from local news outlets but also gets messages from grieving families who want their loved ones to be remembered.

“Even the simple act of seeing your loved one’s name acknowledged in a public space where other people can comment actually becomes very meaningful,” Goldstein said.

Goldstein said it’s dangerous to forget the people who’ve lost their lives to the virus, and their names and faces should make everyone think about if we’re doing enough to save lives.

You can follow the account on Twitter @FacesOfCOVID. You can also reach via direct message if you want your loved one remembered on it.

For the latest information on coronavirus go to the Maryland Health Department’s website or call 211. You can find all of WJZ’s coverage on coronavirus in Maryland here.

Stetson Miller

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