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Honoring victims of the coronavirus pandemic

As we remember the thousands of Americans who lost their lives on this day 19 years ago, we also remember those who have died in the last weeks and months from COVID-19. Judy Woodruff shares stories of five more.

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  • Judy Woodruff:

    As we remember the thousands of Americans who lost their lives on this day 19 years ago, we also remember those who have passed away in the last weeks and months from COVID-19.

    Any friend who needed a home found one with Ronda Felder. In her two-bedroom San Diego apartment, Ronda raised her two children, as well as at least eight neighbors and cousins without a place to live.

  • Ronda Felder:

    I'm thankful for my children that I gave birth to and the ones I didn't give birth to.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    She believed there was always more to give, her daughter said, and even went back to school at age 50 to become a social worker. Ronda was 60 years old.

    Wolodymyr Walter Lysniak came to America after World War II as a displaced person. Hoping to keep alive stories of his native Ukraine, he founded the New Theatre in New York City. As an actor, theater director, and set designer, he put on countless plays.

    Some covered somber topics, like the Ukrainian famine. Others were comedies. It was on stage that he met his wife, also an actress. Together, they raised their two great loves, their daughters. Walter was 92.

    Jimmy Sanchez was a natural salesman with a knack for fashion. Following in his parents' footsteps, Jimmy opened his own thrift store in San Antonio. He was known for gifting clothes and toys from the store to families in need. Witty, loud, and the life of the party, his wife said there was never a dull moment when he was around.

    He loved the movies, traveling, and spending time with his four children. Jimmy was 40 years old.

    Linda Gayle Wilson made a friend of everyone. Her son said she never met a stranger. A dedicated counselor, Linda worked with first-time offenders and the formerly incarcerated. She believed in second chances, and that a little guidance could go a long way. Linda enjoyed spending time with her husband.

    A lover of literature, she enjoyed reading the Peter Rabbit books to her two sons, and later took up writing poetry as a hobby. She passed away in Colorado Springs at age 74.

    Captain Franklin Williams arrived an hour early to every shift as a Detroit firefighter, a position he held for more than 30 years. Dedicated and talented, Frank excelled in everything he did, his daughters said. He was a gifted tradesman, cook, and dancer. The former high school athlete went on to coach football with the Police Athletic League for 13 years.

    In his later years, when he wasn't on the golf course, the 58-year-old was with his wife, seven children and four grandchildren.

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