The family of a man who recently died of Covid-19 have published an obituary blaming his death on “politicians who did not take this pandemic seriously” and people who refuse to wear masks.
Printed last week in the Jefferson Jimplecute, the obituary has since gone viral on social media as an example of the fury many bereaved relatives feel at the US’s pandemic response, which has now seen nearly 155,000 lives lost.
According to the paper, 80-year-old David W. Nagy, of Jefferson, Texas “suffered greatly from the ravages of Covid-19” and died in hospital on 22 July, with his family not allowed to attend his bedside because of the risk of transmission.
After a summary of Mr Nagy’s life, the obituary turns on president Donald Trump and Texas governor Greg Abbott, both of whom expressed early scepticism about the pandemic’s risk to the US and were opposed to locking down the economy to control the virus.
“Family members believe David’s death was needless. They blame his death and the deaths of all the other innocent people, on Trump, Abbott, and all the other politicians who did not take this pandemic seriously and were more concerned with their popularity and votes than lives.
“Also to blame are the many ignorant, self-centred and selfish people who refused to follow the advice of the medical professionals, believing their ‘right’ not to wear a mask was more important than killing innocent people.
“A statement issued by the family declared that Dave did everything he was supposed to do, but you did not. Shame on all of you, and may Karma find you all!”
Mr Trump waited months before wearing a protective mask in public, even after the White House staff began wearing them. In the interim, he repeatedly called on states to reopen their economies despite his own scientific advisers’ worries that doing so too early would spread the virus.
This is one hell of an obit. Condolences to the Nagy family for their loss. pic.twitter.com/3nMnGJn6JF— Jordan Ray (@JordanLRay)August 3, 2020
Mr Abbott, meanwhile, imposed a mask mandate in his state at the start of July after cases began to surge again; however, he had earlier overruled cities and towns that tried to imposed fines for not wearing them, even after he told state legislators that it was almost certain reopening the state would lead to a rise in infections.
Speaking to BuzzFeed news after the obituary went viral, Mr Nagy’s widow Stacy said his death had been “devastating” and that “it pisses me off because he didn’t need to die. Had people been following the recommendations, things would have been different. But people don’t.”