A nine month old baby girl with Down syndrome will have just 10 mourners at her funeral because of the coronavirus outbreak. Sara Bansee did not die of Covid-19, but social distancing rules imposed by the ongoing pandemic means her loved ones must stay six feet apart during Saturday’s service, and will not be able to comfort one another.

Sara, who lived in Royal Palm Beach, Florida, was born with a congenital heart defect, and died Monday morning. Explaining the struggle of trying to arrange a funeral during the ongoing pandemic, her mom Safina explained how everything has closed, with the grieving woman particularly upset not to be able to buy a nice dress to put Sara in.

She said: ‘You don’t think a dress means much to somebody until you’re going through something like this. This is a very big deal for our family.’ Safina’s wish for a dress was answered after Briana Beaty, who runs a local Facebook moms page, heard about Sara’s death and asked her page followers if anyone could help.



Boutique owner Cheryl Navaroli, who runs local clothing store Pineapple Kidz, sent Safina photos of the dresses she had in stock, and told the mother to take her pick. Safina says the random act of kindness has helped her cope with the heartache of losing her young daughter.

She told WPBF: ‘That actually means more than anything. That’s something that you can’t even put into words, the feeling of community.

‘For somebody to reach out and say, “Hey, I have something that can help you,” that really means a lot.’

Covid-19 has forced thousands of families across the world to attend funerals virtually, as places of worship limit the number of attendees to try and stop the spread of the virus. Distressing photos taken in London last week showed undertakers in hazmat suits burying 13 year-old coronavirus victim Ismail Mohamed Abdulwahab while his loved ones watched from a distance.

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