Covering Italy’s Covid crisis is his job. Then it took a personal turn.
Claudio Lavanga, NBC News’ Rome correspondent, has reported on a wide variety of stories. Most recently, he has helped document the pandemic’s terrible toll in Italy, where over 104,000 have died and almost 3.5 million been sickened. Now, as the country goes through a third Covid-19 wave, he describes how his family became part of the story. ROME — Since Italy became the epicenter of the Covid-19 pandemic in Europe, I have kept track of the number of people testing positive every day. It quickly reached into the tens of thousands a cold daily toll, a war bulletin in a fight against an invisible enemy.Then, on Jan. 23, that number struck home.Of 1,331 people in Italy testing positive that day, one of them was my mother, Antonia — known to everybody who knew her as Antonietta.So after a year of staying away because of Covid-19, I realized it was time to go back to the two-story white house I grew up in on the outskirts of Milan. It was time for me to see my mother — even from afar.Antonietta greeted me from an annex above our family home where she is isolating from my father with my sister Maria,