Hundreds of friends and family of a South Florida nurse gathered online Wednesday to attend a virtual funeral for the healthcare worker - who has spent the last two months on the frontlines of the coronavirus pandemic.
32-year-old William Coddington’s death is still undetermined, but friends closest to him say he was stressed from work, concerned about inadequate protection and battling addiction.
“He needed it numbed,” said Robert Marks, a friend of Coddington and the organizer of the funeral.
“What you or I may find as upsetting, or bothersome – that life could be devastating to him.”
For nearly two hours, Coddington’s friends took turns sharing their memories, with his parents listening in.
“Addiction is not a choice, and if you ever run across people who struggle, always be kind. Encourage them, love them, always have compassion not judgement,” said Coddington’s mother.
The funeral, friends say, is a reminder of how the pandemic can inflame mental health issues – with no system in place to catch those who fall apart.