Dedicated doctor passes away, lives on in mural

DocMural cover
Images adapted from: GraffitiStreet and @gerada_art

In troubled times, art finds a way to bridge people together, sometimes making light of an issue under a bigger picture.

On 29th May, a New York-based artist unveiled his giant mural in a New York park. The painting was the portrait of a Latino frontline doctor who died serving the community.

He refused retirement to help others

DocMural Decoo
Image credit: Positive Outlooks

Dr. Ydelfonso Decoo was a 70-year-old Dominican immigrant who worked on the frontlines during the pandemic. He was part of Somos Community Care, a network of doctors in New York areas aimed to help people in excluded communities.

Despite his age, he reportedly refused his retirement to help those in need amid the COVID-19 pandemic and died in the line of duty after he succumbed to the virus himself.

The mural took five days to complete

DocMural Gerada
Rodriguez-Gerada (foreground) working on the giant mural
Image credit: GraffitiStreet

Cuban-American artist Jorge Rodriguez-Gerada painted a giant portrait of the late doctor in Corona Park in Queens, New York.

DocMural aerial
Image credit:
Jorge Rodriguez-Gerada

The mural measures at 20,000 sq. (around 1859 sqm.) and took 5 days to finish.

The mural represented more than one death

DocMural aerial1
The giant mural is named “Somos La Luz Memorial” (“We Are The Memorial Light”)
Image credit: Jorge Rodriguez-Gerada

Rodriguez-Gerada explained that the mural did more than commemorate the late Dr. Decoo and other healthcare workers sacrificing themselves.

He wanted to acknowledge the sacrifices made by Latino immigrants frontline workers. He felt the portrait of Dr. Decoo served as a way to mourn between two issues, reported CBS News.

We are in this together

It is a tense time right now due to both the pandemic and the fight for racial equality.

Please show support however you can, but remember to keep yourself safe.

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