In late spring, the epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic in America was arguably not a major metropolitan area but a large swath of the rural Southwest — the Navajo Nation. For several harrowing months, the reservation saw some of the highest per capita infection and mortality rates in the country. By late July, there were some signs of hope. Cases reached a plateau, and deaths began to decline. But Janene Yazzie ’10BC, a member of the Navajo Nation who works with her husband, Kern Collymore ’10CC, as an advocate, consultant, and community organizer on the reservation, where she was born and raised, says that the crisis still feels urgent. 

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