BY RICARDO MORAES
RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) – Valnir da Silva died on the streets of a poor Rio de Janeiro neighborhood on Saturday. His body lay on the sidewalk for 30 hours, according to relatives and neighbors.
Although they may never be sure, they suspect the 62-year-old was an uncounted victim of the coronavirus outbreak tearing through Rio’s marginalized communities and stretching public services past their limits.
As much of Asia and Europe pass the worst of the pandemic, Brazil is hurtling toward its peak, with more than 17,000 already dead. Latin America’s biggest country passed Britain this week in a grim toll of the most confirmed cases after Russia and the United States.
Deaths in Rio state trail only the more populous Sao Paulo. The outbreak is filling up intensive care units and thinning out the ranks of emergency services.