CNN correspondent Sara Sidner said that she broke down and cried during a live Tuesday TV report on COVID-19 because she feels like her “country is on life support.”
Sidner began crying on “New Day” Tuesday morning after the network aired her interview with Juliana Jimenez Sesma, a woman who lost both her mother and stepfather to COVID-19. The tribute came as California leads the country in coronavirus cases, and Sesma told CNN about her mother’s last words.
“I couldn’t control my tears. I couldn’t use my words,” Sidner wrote in an article on Wednesday explaining the breakdown. (RELATED: First Case Of New, More Contagious COVID-19 Strain From UK Detected In US)
“What moved me to tears was, at first, simply rage. Rage at those who won’t take our ills seriously and those who are actively fighting against the truth. They are putting people’s lives in danger,” she continued before noting that Sesma’s story “knocked” her “down.”
Sesma continued her explanation and said she’s been to 10 hospitals during her reporting on the global pandemic. She’s seen “people writhing in pain, gasping for breath and near death” as well as “doctors and nurses with exhausted written all over their faces still battling like the pandemic just began.”
“So when you saw me cry, you witnessed my rage. I care about my country. I worry about the new and old ills facing us. And I feel like my country is on life support,” Sesma wrote.
I have been asked somewhat rudely why repost or write about this if I was embarrassed. This is why:
It feels better to me to be honest & write about it then hide in the shadow of shame. This is my process. We all have different ways of dealing with it.
Writing brings me comfort
— Sara Sidner (@sarasidnerCNN) January 13, 2021
The CNN correspondent tweeted that she was “embarrassed for crying” on air. Sesma also wrote that she’s been self-isolating throughout the pandemic in an attempt to keep her husband safe.
The breakdown came as Sesma was speaking to CNN anchor Alisyn Camerota, who said at the time that there was “no apology needed” for the emotions.
“It’s just not okay. It’s not okay what we’re doing to each other,” Sesma told Camerota through tears on Tuesday. “These families should not be going through this. No family should be going through this. So, please, listen to what this family is saying. Don’t let this be you.”