Subway station tribute honors 136 MTA employees lost to COVID-19

Faces of the Pandemic
  • Virus Outbreak Transit Worker Memorial
  • Virus Outbreak Transit Worker Memorial
  • Virus Outbreak Transit Worker Memorial
  • Virus Outbreak-Transit Worker Memorial

NEW YORK — New York’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority honored its 136 employees who have died of COVID-19 since the pandemic began with a digital memorial at 107 subway stations.

The tribute features photos of the fallen transit workers accompanied by a poem titled “Travels Far” by former U.S. poet laureate Tracy K. Smith. The poem was commissioned by the MTA and will appear in multiple languages at the designated stations.

Mary Roman, 57, was able to see a picture of her husband Clarence Roman, 58, on a digital memorial at the Bowling Green subway stop in Manhattan on Monday. Clarence Roman was a general superintendent for the Metropolitan Transportation Authority and died of COVID-19 last May.

Transit officials said the video tribute will play three times a day from Monday through Feb. 7.

An online version is accompanied by an original score by composer Christopher Thompson.

“COVID-19 has been a devastating scourge on our entire country and, tragically, that includes the MTA’s workforce,” said MTA Chairman and CEO Patrick J. Foye. “We quickly made sure that those families who lost an MTA worker to COVID were taken care of financially, but the launch of today’s memorial is aimed at personalizing the legacies of those who died during the pandemic. It is a moving tribute to the members of our heroic workforce who lost their lives and we will continue to make sure those who perished are not forgotten.”

NYC Transit Interim President Sarah Feinberg spoke to PIX11 about the memorial and what it took to bring it all together. Watch interview in video below.

Interim NYC Transit president explains MTA COVID-19 memorial

PIX11 contributed to this report.

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