By CBSLA Staff

LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — Los Angeles’ three-day memorial to memorialize those affected by the COVID-19 pandemic began Thursday.

(credit: CBSLA)

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The “Strength and Love, The City of Angels’ COVID-19 Memorial,” organized by Mayor Eric Garcetti’s office, will honor and remember those affected by COVID-19 on Thursday, Friday and Saturday throughout the city.

“It’s not enough for us to simply share those numbers. We need to grieve together, we need to come together, and we need to embrace one another. That’s what Strength and Love, the city of L.A.’s COVID-19 memorial is all about,” Garcetti said Wednesday.

Thursday’s theme is “Honor” and the city encouraged residents to clap at 8 p.m. for the city’s first responders, essential workers, small business owners, community organizers, caregivers, neighbors and families for their work during the pandemic.

Friday’s theme is “Remember” with the city asking that residents light a candle in their window at 8 p.m. to pay homage to the memory of those lost to the pandemic.

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The memorial concludes Saturday with a theme to “Mobilize.” People are asked at 8 p.m. to wave a flashlight or phone light outside to light up L.A. to represent the city working to be more kind, united and resilient than before.

“This has been such a difficult chapter for us, such a traumatic chapter for us,” Garcetti said Wednesday. “We have gone through more pain and suffering than we knew we had. But we also found more resilience and strength than we thought we could ever summon.”

City Hall, SoFi Stadium and the Grand Park Fountain, along with other iconic Los Angeles buildings, will be lit up blue to honor the pandemic’s victims during the memorial.

Nearly 27,000 white flags were on display at the Griffith Observatory Thursday to remember those Los Angeles County residents who have died of the coronavirus since the start of the pandemic.

The memorial comes as another 22 COVID-19 deaths were reported on Wednesday, raising the overall death toll to 26,923.

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(© Copyright 2021 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. City News Service contributed to this report.)