To honor those in Hidalgo County who have died from the COVID-19 virus, the county announced the launch of a new billboard campaign depicting those victims.
The billboards, located at U.S. Expressway 83 East of Bridge Street in Weslaco; U.S. Expressway 281 North of Business 281 in Edinburg; and Expressway 83 West of 29th Street in McAllen, were announced Monday. That was the same day the county reported six new deaths related to the disease and 411 new cases of the novel coronavirus in the county.
The total amount of known COVID-19 cases in Hidalgo county now stands at 48,715 with 2,807 of those cases remaining active. The new deaths add up to 2,160 people who have died from complications related to the disease.
The billboard campaign is a solemn reminder of all the Hidalgo County residents who have suffered the devastating effects that the virus has had on our community, the county stated in a news release.
“This is one of the most powerful images that I’ve seen resulting from the pandemic,” Hidalgo County Judge Richard F. Cortez stated in the release. “This is a reminder to hold those we love even closer, especially as the holidays approach.”
Before Thanksgiving, the County Judge’s Office posted announcements on social media calling on residents to submit photos of their loved ones. Hundreds of people submitted photos.
Along with the billboards, a slideshow will also be posted on the county website and social media accounts.
“Our continued message is not to gather in large groups, wear a face covering and social distance,” Judge Cortez said. “But have a blessed Christmas in honor of those lives depicted in this billboard.”
240 people remain in area hospitals with COVID-19 related complications and 81 of them are being treated in intensive care units.