The latest figures released by Johns Hopkins University revealed that the US’ COVID-19 death toll officially exceeded 500,000, marking a grim milestone as the nation continues its fight against the deadly virus.

US President Joe Biden addressed the nation late on Monday, and urged viewers to “resist becoming numb” in spite of the rising death toll. Biden touched on his own personal lessons of grief, discussing the emotions he experienced after the deaths of his first wife Neilia, his daughter Naomi and his son Beau.

“As we acknowledge the scale of this mass death in America, remember each person and the life they lived. They’re people we knew. They’re people we feel like we knew. Read the obituaries and remembrances. We have to resist becoming numb to the sorrow. We have to resist viewing each life as a statistic or a blur or on the news. We must do so to honor the dead. But, equally important, to care for the living, Biden said.

To heal, we must remember. I know it’s hard. I promise you, I know it’s hard. I remember. But that’s how you heal. You have to remember. And it’s also important to do that as a nation. For those who have lost loved ones, this is what I know: They’re never truly gone,” he said.

Biden also took the moment to state that the virus does not distinguish between one’s political beliefs, stressing the nation must move past the pandemic as one.