Jake Tapper on Why Marking 500,000 American Deaths Due to Covid-19 ‘Is a Worthwhile Use of Our Time’

By A.J. Katz 

More than 500,000 Americans have died from the novel coronavirus, and CNN is marking the horrific milestone by airing a special program Monday in the 11 p.m. ET hour, titled We Remember 500,000: A National Memorial Service for Covid-19.

Jake Tapper will anchor the program, which will feature guests including Cardinal Wilton Gregory, the Archbishop of Washington, D.C., and a musical performance by gospel singer Marvin Sapp. While the special will include several eulogies from everyday Americans, it will also feature Bob Gaudio, Larry Wilmore, Bill Hader, Brad Paisley and others, who will honor the family members, friends and colleagues they’ve lost.

Why did Tapper want to get involved with this special?


“It just feels as though—especially when so many people are confined to our homes because of the weather and the pandemic—that coming together and reflecting on the loss, and trying to find larger meaning in faith and community, is a worthwhile use of our time,” he told TVNewser. “And I am grateful as always to work at a news network and for a boss that allow such moments.”

The special airs hours after President Joe Biden is poised to mark the half-million who have died with a moment of silence and candle lighting ceremony at the White House. Biden will also deliver remarks from the White House at sunset, and he will be joined by first lady Jill Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris and her husband, the second gentleman Doug Emhoff.