‘We are the last responders’: Black funeral homes see the heavy toll of covid-19 on their communities

Growing up in the funeral business could not have prepared Leak for what he has witnessed since March, when the death toll from covid-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, started to climb. When asked how many funerals for black coronavirus victims he has performed at his funeral homes in three locations, Leak said, “It’s just too many to count.”

In Chicago, black residents are 30 percent of the city’s population but account for 44 percent of the deaths from covid-19,…

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