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The San Francisco Bay Space’s 12 months of COVID life

MARCH 8: The coronavirus-stricken Grand Princess cruise ship glows on the horizon outside the Golden Gate off San Francisco, as it waits for authorities to allow it to dock in the Bay Area. Several lawsuits have been filed against Princess Cruises for COVID-19 outbreaks aboard its ships. (Karl Mondon/Bay Area News Group) 

Before this past year, images of pandemics were mostly those of strangers in century-old black and white photographs, grainy unrecognizable faces, people from a bygone era peering at us safely from the remote dustbins of history.

That all changed in 2020.

Now we are the new faces of pandemic. Our families, our friends, our neighbors.

Bay Area News Group photographers documented this past year as we began isolating from each other to stop the deadly spread of the novel coronavirus, COVID-19.

From those early days when the virus seemed safely anchored in purgatory aboard an ill-fated cruise ship off the Golden Gate, to that St. Patrick’s Day eve, when we all faced our first day of lockdown.

Through the chaotic rainbow-colored tiers of repeated closings, openings and reclosings, as our schools, businesses, sports and the arts all grappled to make the best of a scary time — and to make it through to better days. Along the way, families generously shared their stories of love and painful loss.

And finally, through the pain of our political divides during the bitter election year, to the racial reckoning sweeping the streets of our democracy, and a never-ending string of deadly regional wildfires.

These photographs offer a small mirror of ourselves as we fought through it all to keep our health, our dignity and our humanity. We look back now one more time at these images of ourselves, before they too join the next dustbins of history.

MARCH 8: Gov. Gavin Newsom, center, speaks to the media at Elihu M. Harris State Office Building in Oakland, regarding the fate of the Grand Princess cruise ship. The ship was carrying passengers infected with COVID-19 and was waiting to dock at the Port of Oakland. (Randy Vazquez / Bay Area News Group) 
MARCH 17: Pigeons have the run of the San Francisco Caltrain Station during the morning rush hour as the first day of a shelter-in-place period begins to limit the spread of the coronavirus. (Karl Mondon/Bay Area News Group) 
MARCH 19: Lucinda Tinsman quarantines her mother at her home in Menlo Park. Tinsman pulled her mother out of a nursing home where a resident tested positive for COVID-19. (Karl Mondon/Bay Area News Group) 
MARCH 20: Co-owners Zach Davis, left, and Kendra Baker think of the future of their Santa Cruz restaurant, The Picnic Basket. They also own other Santa Cruz establishment’s such as Snap Taco and The Penny Ice Creamery. At the time, they had to lay off 80 of their 85 employees because of the coronavirus. They worried whether their businesses would survive but they have weathered the financial storm so far and have only closed the ice cream shop. (Dai Sugano/Bay Area News Group) 
MARCH 25: Customers wait to enter the Elite Armory Plus gun store during California’s shelter-in-place order in Tracy. Early on, debates erupted over what types of retailers could stay open during the shelter-in-place order. (Doug Duran/Bay Area News Group) 
MARCH 26: The closed Golden Tee Golfland is seen from this drone view during the Bay Area coronavirus shelter-in-place in Castro Valley. Entertainment venues such as movie theaters were closed as part of the order. (Jane Tyska/Bay Area News Group) 
Sam Martinez, left; his daughter, Maryann Martinez, right; and his granddaughter, Alyssa Martinez, 9, gather in front of their home in March 2020 with a wedding picture of Sam and his wife, Arcelia Martinez. The grandmother, who worked at FoodMaxx, died of COVID-19 that month. Her family knew her as a great cook, loving nana and “mother hen.” (Dai Sugano/Bay Area News Group) 

APRIL 21: Edward Hartwig, of Lathrop, comforts his aunt Aida Flores, of San Jose, as they look at Hartwig’s mother and Flores’ sister Mercedes Hartwig during a visitation at the Alta Mesa Funeral Home in Palo Alto. Mercedes and her husband, Richard, died within a week of each other from COVID-19. The Hartwigs’ three children reunited the couple by having their caskets placed side by side during the visitation. (Doug Duran/Bay Area News Group) 
APRIL 2: Realtor Alan Wang, left, shows a home to prospective buyer Steve Young in Foster City. A change to shelter-in-place guidelines allowed real estate agents under strict conditions to show and sell homes.(Anda Chu/Bay Area News Group) 
April 7: People try to keep 6 feet apart as they wait for the sunset in Dublin. Social distancing and shelter-in-place rules changed how Californians did everyday activities. (Doug Duran/Bay Area News Group) 
APRIL 8: Ryan Sutherland stands beside hundreds of gallons of sanitizer at Sutherland Distilling in Livermore. The company switched early on from making spirits such as whiskey and rum to sanitizer for first responders and front-line workers. (Aric Crabb/Bay Area News Group) 
APRIL 10: Fremont firefighter Jaylin Brooks has been working as a COVID-19 tester at the Fire Department Tactical Training Center. He was part of a four-person crew who administered test for the illness. (Dai Sugano/Bay Area News Group) 
APRIL 11: Volunteers David Dove, 17, from left, and Wyatt Taylor, 17, both from Discovery Bay, hide plastic eggs during the Discovery Bay Lions Club annual Easter egg hunt. Because of the coronavirus pandemic, the club changed how it did the activity. Volunteers worked through the night secretly hiding Easter eggs on lawns so children could safely search for them in the morning. About 30 volunteers hid more than 7,000 eggs at 350 houses. (Jose Carlos Fajardo/Bay Area News Group) 
APRIL 12: Although Easter sunrise services atop Mount Davidson were canceled for the first time in its 97-year history, a couple dozen people hiked to the cross and worshipped while maintaining their social distance in San Francisco. (Karl Mondon/Bay Area News Group) 
APRIL 27: Terez Dean Orr, a Smuin Contemporary Ballet dancer, teaches an intermediate ballet class from her kitchen in San Francisco. Artists and other professions had to find ways to stay afloat in the coronavirus economy. (Nhat V. Meyer/Bay Area News Group) 

MAY 4: Claudia Meza, right, holds her granddaughter Emily Rodriguez, 5, left, as she returns to her San Jose home. Meza was released from Kaiser Permanente San Jose Medical Center after spending weeks at the hospital dealing with the coronavirus. (Randy Vazquez / Bay Area News Group) 
MAY 6: Christina Gabe, right, followed by her children Bowen, 13; Aidan; and his 10-year-old twin brother Landan watch an online martial arts class from ATA Martial Arts Academy via Zoom while sitting in their Pleasant Hill living room. (Ray Chavez/Bay Area News Group) 
MAY 14: A reflection shows a pedestrian walking near a temporarily closed retail store in downtown Palo Alto. The coronavirus changed shopping as many turned to online sites to buy groceries, sundries and other goods. (Dai Sugano/Bay Area News Group) 
MAY 16: Graduating senior Catherine Giorgi reacts as she participates during the Class of 2020 Drive-Thru Parade at Carondelet High School in Concord. Because of the coronavirus pandemic, schools found creative ways to hold events for graduating seniors. (Jose Carlos Fajardo/Bay Area News Group) 
MAY 19: A sanctioned and fenced-in homeless encampment is seen from this aerial view across from San Francisco City Hall. The camp featured socially distanced spaces, hand washing stations, bathrooms and 24-hour security. (Jane Tyska/Bay Area News Group) 
MAY 20: Ashleigh Alexander helps Mary Allen, 85, at a coronavirus testing site run by the Roots Community Health Center in the parking lot of Antioch Baptist Church in San Jose. Actor Sean Penn and his nonprofit organization Community Organized Relief Effort provided support for the testing. (Karl Mondon/Bay Area News Group) 
MAY 29: Protester Khennedi Meeks takes a knee in front of San Jose Police officers during a protest decrying the police killing of George Floyd. The death of the Minnesota man sparked demonstrations across the nation in the middle of the pandemic. (Dai Sugano/Bay Area News Group) 

JUNE 12: Surgery schedulers Raquel Smith, from left, Lavanna Curtis and Latasha Mason holds signs that read “Black Lives Matter” during a moment of reflection in support of victims of racial violence at John Muir Medical Center in Walnut Creek. About 200 hospital staff members including doctors, nurses and administration staff gathered in the lobby to take a knee for 8 minutes and 46 seconds to remember George Floyd who was killed while being arrested by Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin. (Jose Carlos Fajardo/Bay Area News Group) 
JUNE 5: Protesters participate in a “die-in” outside San Jose City Hall. Thousands of demonstrators joined to protest the police killing of Minneapolis man George Floyd in a summer marked by demonstration against racial injustice. (Anda Chu/Bay Area News Group) 
JUNE 6: A sign pinned to a flower wall can be seen during the Berkeley March to Bury Racism funeral procession. The march was held to honor the lives of George Floyd and the other individuals who have lost their lives to racial terror. More than 2,000 people began marching from Malcolm X Elementary School to Martin Luther King Civic Center Park. (Jose Carlos Fajardo/Bay Area News Group) 
JUNE 10: Batman, a 19-year-old San Jose man who wants to remain anonymous, talks to David Lee Lopez, far left, in his tent after he delivered water and food to the homeless encampment under Highway 87 in downtown San Jose. Amid the pandemic, there were some in masks who made the world a little brighter. (Nhat V. Meyer/Bay Area News Group) 

JULY 20: First-grade teacher Lori Suydam takes part in an online class session with 14 students at Park Elementary School in Hayward. Distance learning became the norm during the pandemic. (Aric Crabb/Bay Area News Group) 
JULY 20: Daniel M. Russell, senior research scientist for search quality at Google, holds a virtual reality headset in his Palo Alto. Many vacation plans were canceled and families had to find other ways to travel. Sometimes, it was done virtually. (Dai Sugano/Bay Area News Group) 
JULY 20: San Francisco Giants’ Austin Slater (13), Steven Duggar (6) and Mike Yastrzemski (5) celebrate their 6-2 win over the Oakland Athletics in an MLB exhibition game at the Coliseum in Oakland. Because of the MLB health rules, the players weren’t allowed to touch each other while rejoicing over the victory. (Jane Tyska/Bay Area News Group)) 
JULY 28: Twins Kristin Hembree and Lisa Thomas wear their favorite team’s colors while donning face shields and watching the San Francisco Giants home opener on their phones just outside of fan-free Oracle Park. (Karl Mondon/Bay Area News Group) 

AUG. 10: Nicole Lopez, 8, a Manzanita SEED Elementary School second-grader, raises her hand as she introduces herself to classmates while distance learning from her Oakland home. Oakland Unified School District schools started teaching through video amid the chaos of the coronavirus pandemic and disagreements between the district and the teacher’s union. (Jose Carlos Fajardo/Bay Area News Group) 
AUG. 16: A big crowd cools off at Kings Beach State Recreation Area in the Lake Tahoe region. The pandemic put local residents at odds with visitors who they say behaved badly and placed the area at risk of an outbreak. (Ray Chavez/Bay Area News Group) 
AUG. 26: Sgt. Gilbert Polanco’s daughter Selena Polanco, center; her mother, Patricia; and her brother, Vincent, right, watch as an honor guard folds an American flag during a ceremony remembering the late correctional officer. Gilbert Polanco, who worked at San Quentin State Prison, died after contracting COVID-19. The state’s prisons were the site of virus outbreaks that claimed the lives of workers and inmates. (Aric Crabb/Bay Area News Group) 
AUG. 22: Firefighters work to protect homes surrounded by flames in Boulder Creek. The pandemic added another layer of difficulty to one of the state’s worst years for fires.(Dylan Bouscher/Bay Area News Group) (Dylan Bouscher/Bay Area News Group)
AUG. 26: Carol and her husband, Bruce Schafer, look over what remains of their home along Cantelow Road destroyed by the LNU Lightning Complex fires in Vacaville. The Schafers stopped by to water and feed their three cows and three bulls. (Anda Chu/Bay Area News Group) 

SEPT. 22: San Francisco Giants’ Drew Smyly (18) delivers against the Colorado Rockies in the second inning of a MLB game at Oracle Park in San Francisco. Cutouts filled many ballparks as MLB teams played without any fans for much of the season. (Ray Chavez/Bay Area News Group) 
SEPT. 9: A person takes a picture of the San Francisco skyline from Middle Harbor Shoreline Park in Oakland. The Northern California wildfire smoke led to the unusual orange- and red-hued skies. (Jane Tyska/Bay Area News Group) 
SEPT. 11: Jo Anna Lujan, left; her husband, Carlos; and their children, Carlos Jr., 10; center, Joshua, 8; and Haley, 13, stand together at Alviso Park in San Jose. Six months of the COVID-19 lockdown left families missing the simple things in life. (Dai Sugano/Bay Area News Group) 
SEPT. 14: Co-workers Paul Carlisle, from left, Frank Tuzzolino, and Casey Golliher sit for lunch in a nearly empty Castro Street in downtown Mountain View. Cities changed streets and parking spaces to accommodate restaurants’ efforts to do outdoor dining during the pandemic. (Dai Sugano/Bay Area News Group) 

OCT. 7: Aleena Hastings, 3, of Oakland, pauses as she plays with her brother Amar, 8, at Speer Family Farms pumpkin patch in Oakland. The autumn attraction adapted to the pandemic by offering hand sanitizer and checking the temperatures of all visitors. (Ray Chavez/Bay Area News Group) 
OCT. 7: John Jones III, a single father in East Oakland, helps his son Josiah, 6, a Horace Mann kindergartner, prepare for a day of remote learning at home. Studies showed that there was learning loss with the closure of campuses. (Karl Mondon/Bay Area News Group) 
OCT. 7: Alyssa Bastovan, left, program coordinator with Friends from Meals on Wheels Food & Nutritional Services, hands Bob Chapman a box in his San Jose home. The coronavirus made helping seniors difficult as it forced them to be more careful and more isolated. (Nhat V. Meyer/Bay Area News Group) 
OCT. 24: San Jose State’s football team pauses for a moment of unity after warming up for their game against Air Force at CEFCU Stadium in San Jose. Gestures such as these were common after the George Floyd protests of the summer. (Karl Mondon/Bay Area News Group) 

NOV. 7: People gather for a group hug after listening to President-elect Joe Biden speak after being declared the winner of the 2020 presidential election in San Francisco. Biden surpassed the 270 electoral votes required to win the White House by flipping the battleground states of Arizona, Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania. (Jose Carlos Fajardo/Bay Area News Group) 
NOV. 14: Kathy Terry, right, of Vacaville, and Maureen Sesser, of Fairfield, play bingo from their car in the parking lot at Blue Devils Bingo in Concord. Drive-in experiences such as these became popular during the pandemic. (Ray Chavez/Bay Area News Group) (Ray Chavez/Bay Area News Group)
NOV. 19: Mahesh Mahadevan, of Fremont, drives his family past a replica Tyrannosaurus during the Dinosaur Adventure Drive-Thru at the Alameda County Fairgrounds in Pleasanton. The Dinosaur Adventure featured 80 life-size creatures with an accompanying audio tour. Exhibits like these gave families a welcome distraction from the monotony of staying home. (Doug Duran/Bay Area News Group) 
NOV. 21: Dawn, a college student traveling home for Thanksgiving who would only give her first name, enters San Francisco International Airport dressed in protective clothing and mask. Despite health officials’ warnings, many still traveled during the holidays. (Karl Mondon/Bay Area News Group) 
NOV. 23: COVID-19 patient Juan Flores, left, speaks to his son Israel on an iPad in the intensive care unit at Regional Medical Center in San Jose. Hospitals adapted to the challenges of coronavirus by using technology. (Nhat V. Meyer/Bay Area News Group) 

DEC. 22: Registered nurses Barbara Callens, left, and Linh Nham, right, treat a patient in the intensive care unit inside El Camino Health Mountain View Hospital. The holidays were a dark time when coronavirus cases were soaring. (Randy Vazquez/ Bay Area News Group) 
DEC. 6: A shopper’s reflection is seen in the window of one of the Stanford Shopping Center stores in Palo Alto. Online shopping was more popular than ever as consumers changed their habits during the busy holiday season. (Randy Vazquez/ Bay Area News Group) 
DEC. 8: Supporters of Calvary Chapel wave to cars outside Santa Clara Superior Court in downtown San Jose. The church repeatedly defied shelter-in-place orders during the pandemic. A U.S. Supreme Court ruling ultimately sided with worshippers. (Nhat V. Meyer/Bay Area News Group) 
DEC. 12: The Golden State Warriors prepare to play the Denver Nuggets during their NBA preseason game at Chase Center in San Francisco. It was their first game in 277 days and no fans were in the stands. (Jose Carlos Fajardo/Bay Area News Group) 
DEC. 15: Dr. Robert Liebig receives a COVID-19 vaccine from Holly Longmuir, right, infection prevention and control program manager, at the Contra Costa Regional Medical Center in Martinez. Front-line health care workers who have high risk of exposure to infectious disease received their initial doses of the new vaccine. It was a glimmer of hope that the pandemic could be headed toward an end. (Jane Tyska/Bay Area News Group) 

JAN. 21: Bob Stannard, 91, continues waiting for his COVID-19 vaccine at his home in Gilroy. Back then, his children had had no luck arranging a shot with his medical provider. Getting the vaccine to the most vulnerable demographics was difficult at first. (Karl Mondon/Bay Area News Group) 
JAN. 10: A bicyclist moves along a trail at Marina Park in San Leandro. The outdoors became hugely popular during the pandemic as many grew tired of being cooped up inside, according to the Associated Press. (Aric Crabb/Bay Area News Group) 
JAN. 27: Ursula Haeussler, a 105-year-old Fremont woman who lived through the Spanish flu pandemic, went through another one. She received her COVID-19 vaccine in December. She was 4 years old when the Spanish flu spread and killed several family members. (Dai Sugano/Bay Area News Group) 
JAN. 27: Protesters face off with officers at the Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Office during a demonstration against the displacement of renters during the coronavirus pandemic. Authorities declared the protest an unlawful assembly. (Anda Chu/Bay Area News Group) 


FEB. 10: Foothill Elementary School first-graders study inside the multipurpose room on their Saratoga campus. This was the day some Saratoga Union Elementary District students returned to classrooms for the first time since the pandemic closed campuses in March 2020. (Dai Sugano/Bay Area News Group) 
FEB. 13: The San Jose Sharks return to the SAP Center to play the Las Vegas Golden Knights in their first home game in almost a year. Like other California venues, the stands were empty for the game. (Karl Mondon/Bay Area News Group) 
FEB. 14: Robert Bondonno, center, and his wife, Carol, right, raise their hands while listening to the service at Rise City Church in Redwood City. The church was able to have indoor service with 25 percent capacity. (Randy Vazquez/ Bay Area News Group) 
FEB. 14: Deputy Commissioner of marriages Julie Graff performs a wedding ceremony for George Ambartsoumian, of Walnut Creek, and Sarah Ambartsoumian during Valentine’s Day at the Contra Costa County Clerk-Recorder’s Office in Martinez. Because of COVID-19 protocols, all ceremonies were conducted with a glass barrier between the couple and the officiant and only the couple were allowed inside the building. (Jose Carlos Fajardo/Bay Area News Group) 
FEB. 20: Members of the Buk Sing Kung Fu Academy of Fremont perform the traditional Chinese lion dance at Lan’s Hair salon as owner Lan Ho, right, employees and customers take photos and video during the Lunar New Year Lion Dance Blessing in Oakland. The lion dance procession blessed Laurel District businesses as a way to bring good luck and welcome the Year of the Ox. (Ray Chavez/Bay Area News Group) 
FEB. 25: Practicing in pads for the first time since the pandemic shut down the season last year, the Los Gatos High football team takes to the field. (Karl Mondon/Bay Area News Group) 
FEB. 26: Residents enjoy Heaven Mousalem’s belly dance, left, during a Purim celebration at Moldaw Residences in Palo Alto. (Randy Vazquez/ Bay Area News Group) 

MARCH 4: Rebecca Busler, of Moraga, picks flowers from a field of mustard plants with her daughter Zelda Busler, 2, while enjoying a sunny Thursday afternoon at Heather Farm Park in Walnut Creek. (Jose Carlos Fajardo/Bay Area News Group) 
MARCH 4: Alisal Elementary School staff member Amy Wood, left, greets students as they return to the Pleasanton campus for in-class instruction. (Aric Crabb/Bay Area News Group) 


MARCH 10: Waiter Victor Ochoa serves customer Shaylin Usiak inside the dining room of Five Tacos and Beers in Albany. Restaurants were allowed to resume indoor dining in Alameda County on Wednesday. (Aric Crabb/Bay Area News Group) 


MARCH 12: High school football returns for the first time in more than a year since the start of the pandemic crisis as Tristan Hofmann is introduced at senior night at Half Moon Bay before their game against Burlingame, Friday night, March 12, 2021, at John Francis Field in Half Moon Bay, Calif. (Karl Mondon/Bay Area News Group) 

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