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TIMELINE: 18,000 dead. 1 million sick. It's been a roller coaster of a year since the first case of COVID in the DMV

The pandemic that forever changed lives began in earnest in the DMV 365 days ago. It has brought pain, loss and uncertainty. But it also brought us closer together.

Laura Wainman, Khalida Volou (WUSA9), Jonathan Franklin (WUSA9), Nick Boykin (WUSA9), Matt Pusatory (WUSA9), Kyley Schultz (WUSA 9), Jordan Fischer, JC Whittington

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“We think it’s going to have a very good ending for us. That I can assure you."

On Jan. 30, 2020, hours after WHO declared a global emergency, former President Donald Trump sought to reassure Americans that a new disease ravaging China was nothing to worry about. Two months later, coronavirus would find its way to Washington, D.C., rapidly spreading across the whole DMV, and claiming its first life, locally, less than two weeks later. 

It's been 365 days exactly since Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan alerted us all to the very first COVID case in the area, and nearly 18,000 of our neighbors have perished in the fight against the deadly virus. It's been a year filled with change, loss and uncertainty. The world shut down, and businesses are still struggling to survive. Schools made the leap to virtual learning and we all made pivot after pivot in an attempt to thrive -- or merely survive -- in the new normal. 

But there's a light at the end of the tunnel. People are getting the vaccine. And now we can start to talk about what life looks like after the pandemic. On this first anniversary of the day that changed everything, let's take a moment to honor all that we as a community have overcome in the last year. And for our neighbors still very much hurting, one thing is certain, we are now and forever in this together. 

1 Year of Coronavirus in the DMV