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Greenville Business Magazine

Columbia Lowers All Flags Over City-Operated Buildings to Half-Staff As COVID-19 Related Deaths Surpass 100

Apr 15, 2020 03:28PM ● By David Dykes

By David Dykes

As the number of South Carolina deaths from confirmed COVID-19 virus cases surpassed 100, Columbia Mayor Steve Benjamin directed officials at all city-operated buildings, including City Hall, to lower their flags to half-staff in honor of the state’s citizens who have died due to the disease. 

Flags were to be lowered Wednesday beginning at 4 p.m.

As of Wednesday, the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control confirmed more than 3,650 cases of COVID-19 and 102 deaths attributed to the virus.

“We are in a war with COVID-19. This enemy doesn’t respect life, it doesn’t acknowledge borders and it doesn’t respect authority,” Benjamin said. “We feel sorrow and heartache due the enormous loss of life from COVID-19 symptoms across our state. We know the grief families feel for their loved ones, many who have died alone and afraid in hospitals and care centers. Lowering the flag of Columbia is an expression of our understanding of the suffering so many grieving families are feeling right now.”

Since March 11th, the new city flag has been flying over Columbia buildings. The new flag, which was locally designed, features a six-pointed star representing the city's resilience, officials said.