Reporting on the COVID-19 pandemic is not easy.
On Monday night, CNN’s Sara Sidner was reporting live from California when she broke down in tears on the air, describing the mounting death toll in the state’s hospitals.
— Faith Abubéy (@ReporterFaith) January 12, 2021
“This is the tenth hospital that I have been — I’m sorry,” she said, getting choked up.
“This is the tenth — I apologize. I’m going to try to get through this,” Sidner continued. “This is the tenth hospital that I have been in, and to see the way that these families have to live after this and the heartache that goes so far and so wide — it’s really hard to take. I’m sorry, Alisyn.”
Anchor Alisyn Camerota told her, “Sara, no apologies, no apology needed. We’ve been watching your reporting on the ground throughout this horrific year, and we have all been struck by the grief, the collective grief that all of us are in. And to see these families who are soldiering through it, who are persevering and who are having to have these funerals in parking lots, like the ones that you showed us, it is just a collective trauma that all of us are living through. Sara, we all appreciate the heart that you bring to this every single day, as well as your excellent reporting.”
Sidner continued with tears streaming down her face, “Thanks, it’s just not okay. It’s not okay what we’re doing to each other. These families should not be going through this. No family should be going through this. So, please, listen to what this family is saying. Don’t let this be you. Do whatever you can to keep this from killing your family members and your neighbours and your friends and your teachers and doctors and firefighters, all of these people are here to help you. But you have to do your part.”
After going off the air, she expressed her heartbreak over the situation amid the pandemic.
I’m still not okay after seeing the heartbreak in the City of Angels because of #coronavirus. I know that being there to see the destruction it’s doing to families is small in comparison to the pain the families feel. W @annamajaCNN https://t.co/6IgDWouYqz
— Sara Sidner (@sarasidnerCNN) January 12, 2021
On Twitter, Sidner received messages of support from viewers, including one from actress Jenna Dewan.
“Wow. Please everyone take a minute to watch this. And PLEASE do your part to keep your family safe and those around you safe from this virus,” she wrote. “I know it’s been a long and very tough time, but we all need to come together now more than ever.”
Wow. Please everyone take a minute to watch this. And PLEASE do your part to keep your family safe and those around you safe from this virus. I know it’s been a long and very tough time, but we all need to come together now more than ever. https://t.co/ndm56JqNiR
— Jenna Dewan (@jennadewan) January 12, 2021
@CNN Bless you, Sara Snider.❤️
— Ritch Broughton (@ritchbroughton) January 12, 2021
#sarasnider We are all you right now. Our tears are flowing freely. Thank you for your reporting and your humanity.
— Mrs G, Esq. (@SassyPixie06) January 12, 2021