Tri-Cities: 19 people die from COVID-19 this week; most of the pandemic

Rebecca Blackwell

KENNEWICK, Wash. — The bi-county region that constitutes the Tri-Cities suffered 19 deaths to COVID-19 in the last week—the most of any single week since the pandemic began last March.

According to the Benton-Franklin Health District (BFHD), five of those deaths were due to a backlog in state COVID-19 reporting as it can take several weeks to process this information. However, new reports show that Benton County recently lost 13 people and Franklin County lost six people.

Amongst these victims was a man in his 30s in Franklin County, a Franklin County woman in her 40s, and a Benton County man in his 40s. This increases the COVID-19 death toll for the Tri-Cities region to 392 community members lost in the last year and a half.

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The BFHD’s Health Officer, Dr. Amy Person, offered the following comments on the tragic influx of community deaths to COVID-19.

“It is always difficult to report out death numbers each week,” Dr. Person said. “This week is incredibly hard as it represents the reality of what surging cases causes downstream. As with any death that has occurred as a result of this terrible disease, our sincerest sympathies go out to everyone impacted by the loss of these individuals.”

The total number of Benton County community members who’ve died from COVID-19 complications is 263 while Franklin County’s total rises to 129.

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