Public Media Arts Hub

WATCH: Nurse sings 'Amazing Grace' at national COVID remembrance

On the same day that the estimated coronavirus death toll surpassed 400,000 lives lost in the U.S., President-elect Joe Biden, Vice President-elect Kamala Harris and their spouses visited a somber national memorial at the Lincoln Memorial in honor of the victims.

With the Reflecting Pool as a backdrop, and 400 lights lit up in honor of the 400,000 dead, Lori Marie Key, a 29-year-old nurse from Livonia, Michigan, sang "Amazing Grace."

READ MORE: How communities across the country are honoring COVID victims

Key once sang the hymn during a shift change at St. Mary Mercy Hospital, which was captured on a video that went viral. She said it's been heartbreaking to work at her hospital's COVID unit.

"But when I am at work, I sing," she said. "It gives me strength during difficult times, and I believe it helps heal."

Biden delivered brief remarks after Key's performance, saying that: "To heal, we must remember. It's hard sometimes to remember. But that's how we heal. It's important to do that as a nation."

Harris' message to the nation was that her "abiding prayer is that we emerge from this ordeal with a new wisdom, to cherish simple moments, to imagine new possibilities, and to open our hearts, just a little bit more, to one another."

Support Canvas

Sustain our coverage of culture, arts and literature.

Send Us Your Ideas
Let us know what you'd like to see on ArtsCanvas. Your thoughts and opinions matter.