In Memoriam’s: COVID-19

Campaign 2020: Interview with County Commissioner Jim Cavanaugh  - County Commissioner Jim Cavanaugh calls into Mind and Soul in the Morning and talks to Buddi3 Da Gawd about what is going on with the remaining millions in CARES ACT funds. Outside consultants and Omaha bureaucracy are holding up help for community members in need of assistance. “I want everybody who is in need, and [...]

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Nebraska Leaders’ Hands Are Tied to Fight Pandemic at State Level - This is the third installment in a three-part series about the COVID-19 pandemic in Nebraska. Read the first two installments about the effects of the pandemic on the state as well as the toll it’s taking on health care workers. By Chris Bowling Tony Vargas doesn’t do well feeling defeated. The state senator representing District [...]

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“It Feels Like A Slap in The Face:” Short-Staffed Hospitals Need Public’s Help to Curb COVID-19 Spread - This is the second story in a three-part series about the COVID-19 pandemic in Nebraska. Read the first installment here. Look for the third part on Sunday. By Chris Bowling When Amanda Pappas thinks about how bad the pandemic could get, her thoughts turn to nightmares. The COVID ICU nurse talked to a doctor recently [...]

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As COVID Crisis Closes in, Health Care Workers Beg to Be Heard - This is the first in a three-part series about the rise of COVID-19 in Nebraska. Check back Friday for the next installment. By Chris Bowling If the patient’s lucky, they’ll have a window in their hospital room. Maybe it will be open so they can feel the chill of fall in Omaha, see the falling [...]

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Omaha Police Union President in Critical Care for COVID-19 - The president of the Omaha Police Officers Association, Tony Conner, is receiving intensive care due to complications of COVID-19, according to a press release from the union. The press release described his condition as  “critical, but stable.” Twenty five officers of the Omaha Police Department’s 902 sworn members have COVID-19, according to Lieutenant Sherie Thomas, [...]

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New COVID-19 Tool Visualizes Infection Risk Nationwide - If you’re planning on seeing family for the holidays or want to dine in-person at a restaurant in Douglas County, you’re likelihood of being exposed to COVID-19 is high. If your Thanksgiving gathering has just 15 people, there’s more than a 50% chance someone there is going to have COVID-19 if its in Douglas County. [...]

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Covid’s Challenges Can Bring Out the Best in People - Like everything else during COVID-19, traditions around sending the departed to meet their eternal reward get tested. Commemorating the deceased is not what it used to be. Limits on indoor gatherings, along with prescribed physical distancing and face masks, reflect concerns public health officials and average citizens harbor about the novel coronavirus threat. By mid-October [...]

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As COVID-19 Cases Escalate, Hospitals Warn of Straining Staff, Resources - Public health officials and healthcare workers are again sounding the alarm that Omaha faces a grim future if COVID-19 infections don’t slow. The solution to stopping the spread lies in personal responsibility, according to the chief medical officers of the metro area’s largest healthcare systems. As for directed health measures and government restricting certain gatherings, [...]

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Nebraska Draws Closer to a COVID-19 Crisis - By Chris Bowling See our COVID-19 data, updated daily, here. Where should we start this week? Do we talk about how Nebraska’s daily COVID-19 cases are through the roof? Or that Gov. Pete Ricketts imposed meek directed health measures to limit spread? Or that states recently submitted their plans to distribute a vaccine (which if [...]

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Black Nebraskans Share Burden of Unemployment as Pandemic Continues - In the early days of the pandemic, claims for unemployment benefits shot to historic proportions in Nebraska. At its peak in April, claims for unemployment were more than 17 times higher than previous years. Since then unemployment has started to drop with many returning to work as the state enters new phases of reopening despite [...]

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The Business and Ritual of Dealing with Death in a Pandemic - Editor’s note: We need your help! Support content like this by becoming a Reader member here. In a pandemic, it’s only natural to focus on first responders. Pandemic or not, ERs, ICUs and nursing homes are where patients with life-threatening illnesses find care, and either recover or die. When death occurs, it’s easy to overlook the role [...]

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Searching for Answers in A Worsening Pandemic - In last week’s column, I posed the question: “Health officials are trying to warn us about the pandemic, will we listen?” While it’s probably too early to see whether the data reflects a trend reversal, it certainly isn’t getting any better. Last week, the state surpassed its previous peak of daily COVID-19 cases on a [...]

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Public Health Officials Say Nebraska is at a COVID-19 Crossroad, Will We Listen? - As I put it in one Tweet last week, “Well, it happened.” On Sept. 28 Nebraska’s seven-day COVID-19 caseload average inched past its previous peak from May. Then it went higher. And higher. And higher. By the time it stopped climbing, the state had more than 100 daily cases on average than it did back [...]

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 Carlos A. Tibbs,  Sept 16, 1985 – August 19, 2020 -   Omaha’s comedy scene lost one of its most beloved performers when Omaha standup Carlos Tibbs died from COVID-19 at age 34. His mother Lydia, 50, died two days earlier, also from COVID-19. Tibbs was a rising star, winning the OEA Award for Outstanding Comedian in 2019. Besides performing on local stages, Tibbs also performed [...]

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Sofía Barragán de la Luz, September 18, 1945 – May 21, 2020 - The heart of Sofía Barragán de la Luz stopped beating at 5 a.m. in an Omaha hospital, stopped by COVID-19. Ms. Sofía, a woman who never tired of learning, was born in Chietethlan, a Mexican town in Guerrero. There she married Agustín Vargas Ayala and they had four sons and one daughter, now adults. In [...]

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Don José Gaytán-Ramos, December 29, 1964 – May 31, 2020 - José David Gaytán was born in Nueva Rosita, Coahuila, Mexico. He came to the U.S. seeking a better future, settling in Omaha. He opened La Michoacana on 24th and F Streets, selling Mexican snacks, paletas and ice cream. Despite a rocky start, he and his wife Vaneza Ramos worked hard and built up a successful business. [...]

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Scholarships Available to Help Get Nebraskans Back to Fulfilling Work - As Nebraska and the country’s economy climbs back from the steep downturn it took following the early days of the pandemic, many workers are still finding it hard to find work. While unemployment has dropped significantly, rates are still high compared to a year ago and have disproportionately affected certain populations, especially communities of color. [...]

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The Virus in The Polling Booth | The Reader’s Weekly COVID Roundup: Sept. 28, 2020 - As we’re nearing election day, the news about COVID-19 has waned for a saturation of political coverage highlighted by a few political bombshells.  (if you’re reading this you better be registered to vote. You can do it online!) There’s the story about Omaha being a potential election decider that keeps gaining steam and President Donald [...]

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My COVID-19 Scare | The Reader’s Weekly COVID Roundup: Sept. 22, 2020 - Editors note: This is a weekly series from The Reader breaking down COVID-19 data from the state. In it, reporter Chris Bowling will look at the latest in COVID-19 numbers and news. See daily COVID-19 updates here This week I had a COVID-19 scare. Someone I was with on Friday tested positive for the virus. Naturally as [...]

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Help Us Tell The Stories of Nebraskans We’ve Lost to COVID-19 - Intro by Will Bauer  Lives lost to COVID-19 Nearly 400 Nebraskans have died during the pandemic, but we don’t know much about them. Every day, a health department in the state issues a press release that says a man or a woman of such and such age died. But no more. These people are mothers [...]

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