Nine hundred thousand American lives have been lost to Covid-19, said a total compiled by John Hopkins University. President Joe Biden released a statement on Friday to commemorate the lives of each person that has been lost since the beginning of the pandemic nearly two years ago.

“Today, our nation marks another tragic milestone — 900,000 American lives have been lost to COVID-19,” the President said in the statement. “They were beloved mothers and fathers, grandparents, children, brothers and sisters, neighbors, and friends. Each soul is irreplaceable.”

The President empathized with how it felt to lose close family members and friends.

“I know that the emotional, physical, and psychological weight of this pandemic has been incredibly difficult to bear,” Biden said. “I know what it’s like to stare at an empty chair around the kitchen table. But I also know that we carry an incredible capacity within ourselves — not only to come through our grief stronger but to come together to protect one another.”

Biden ended his statement by encouraging the vaccine.

According to a study performed by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, those who are unvaccinated run a 97 times higher risk of dying from the virus than those who are vaccinated and boosted. An NBC News tally reported that in the last six weeks, states with lower vaccination rates are the states that lost the most amount of people to the virus.

Biden called the vaccine “our most important tool” to fighting the coronavirus.

“It’s free, easy, and effective — and it can save your life, and the lives of those you love,” Biden said.

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