On Veterans Day this year, there were no massive parades, many canceled gatherings and a stark reminder that COVID-19 is affecting veterans at higher rates than the general population.
"Faces of COVID," a Twitter account curated by CEO of 90 West Alex Goldstein, features profiles of individuals across the country who have died from the coronavirus. On Veterans Day, the account featured veterans.
Every hour, the account featured a different veteran who died as a result of the pandemic. They included WWII veterans, Vietnam veterans, women veterans, sailors and soldiers from across the country.
"We owe a tremendous debt to our veterans for what they were willing to sacrifice, and it is unconscionable that we have let them down through grave mismanagement of this pandemic response," Goldstein said Wednesday.
The number of Department of Veterans Affairs patients and staff sick because of the coronavirus has reached record highs during the first two weeks of November -- more than doubling since the same time last month.
VA's overall mortality rate is about 5.2% -- still more than double the about 2.5% mortality rate for Americans overall, according to the most recently available Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data. VA recorded about 4,254 deaths from the coronavirus as of Nov. 12.