Today at the Waco Cultural Arts Fest, there was a ceremony to remember the 680 people who have died from COVID-19 and those who have been working throughout the pandemic.

There are now 600 banners hanging at Indian Spring Park. The banners are silhouettes representing different age groups.

Local artists and family members painted the banners, then Cultural Arts of Waco cut and sewed the silhouettes.

Doreen Ravenscroft is the President of Cultural Arts of Waco.

“It was such an honor to be able to represent all those in our community which are the fabric of our community,” Ravenscroft said. “But we don’t really realize how many there are until we see them all here today.”

She said it was emotional when families dropped off the banners.

“They are giving a part of the one that they lost over to us,” Ravenscroft said.

People could also hang ribbons on the fence to honor those who worked through the pandemic. Orange represented first responders, blue represented health care workers, and yellow represented essential workers.

“These ribbons are a reminder of lives given in a different way,” Leshonda Malrey-Horne said.

Malrey-Horne is the director for the Waco-McLennan County Public Health District.

She said September 2021 had the highest number of deaths in the county.

“It’s important for events like this to take place so we can remember people that we lost,” Malrey-Horne said. “And these ribbons are really important to think about those who contributed to the fight of COVID because even if you didn’t lose your life, we all lost something.”

The exhibition will be up until the middle of November, then the banners will be given to the families.

Ravenscroft said she hopes people in the community will take time to go see the exhibition and remember those who have died.

“Even though you can’t reach out to the families, just somehow think about them and know that Waco is helping to support them even though we couldn’t be there to hug them,” Ravenscroft said.