The New York Times and Breakwater Studios present “Cause of Life”, a series celebrating the messy, imperfect and extraordinary lives of five people we lost to Covid-19.

Rosary Castro-Olega

As told by her twin sister, fellow nurse and lifelong dance partner Rosalie

Rosary Castro-Olega was a retired nurse who returned to the
front lines to fight the virus, ultimately becoming one of the Filipino-American
nurses who were disproportionately killed by the virus.

Humberto Trujillo

As told by his daughter Mikki, the first in the family to graduate from college

A hard-working bricklayer from the projects, Humberto
Trujillo helped build the main Phoenix post office — and rose to
become his city’s first Hispanic postmaster.

Calvin Haworth

As told by his granddaughter, the Olympian Kara Goucher, whose career he inspired

When his son-in-law was killed in a tragic car crash, World War II veteran Calvin Haworth became a surrogate parent and an activist against drunk driving in Minnesota.

Jerry Givens

As told by his colleague and friend Abe

A devout christian, Jerry Givens was Virginia’s chief executioner, before he became
an advocate of abolishing the death penalty.

Angela Chaddlesone McCarthy

As told by her cousin Robert

Angela Chaddlesone McCarthy was a teenage mother raised on a Native American reservation who overcame great odds to become a Kiowa tribe legislator in Oklahoma.