E60’s newest film, “Mayra,” explores the story of Mayra Ramirez, a 28-year-old paralegal and avid runner whose life was forever altered by the virus that swept across the world in 2020.
But it was Univison’s Jorge Ramos, who is also the reporter for the film, who became an unexpected and integral part of the story.
Mayra became the first person in the United States to receive a groundbreaking experimental double lung transplant. It was her last hope when COVID-19 brought her to the brink of death.
“Mayra,” produced by Dan Lindberg, debuts Sunday, Nov. 12, at 10:30 p.m. ET on ESPN, streaming afterward on ESPN+.
Lindberg shared some of the unseen layers of the film, what emerged throughout filming, and Mayra’s profound impact.
“Why her name is the standalone title for the film is simple,” Lindberg explains. “Mayra earned it. She carried herself with strength, leaving a lasting impression on everyone she met. Her journey is a testament to the strength of the human spirit.”
As the E60 team came across Mayra’s story and her groundbreaking double lung transplant, they faced a unique challenge. In order to move forward with the film, there had to be a sports tie-in. They were in luck because they discovered Mayra was not only a fighter, but also an avid runner. This discovery added a layer of sportsmanship to the story.
We didn’t know that Mayra was a fan of Jorge Ramos before we began. Her promise to run with Jorge became her guiding light throughout her journey. – Dan Lindberg
But the unexpected twist came when Mayra developed a friendship with Ramos during her recovery. During this time, Ramos and Mayra promised to run along the Chicago River when she recovered. The significance of this promise ran deeper than anyone could have imagined.
Lindberg recalls, “We didn’t know that Mayra was a fan of Jorge Ramos before we began. Her promise to run with Jorge became her guiding light throughout her journey. It was a touching revelation, and after her passing, her friends and family shared stories of how that promise fueled her determination.”
Ramos’ willingness to be part of Mayra’s story and his genuine care for her also added an unexpected layer of authenticity and emotion. This is Ramos’ second project with E60. In 2019, he collaborated with the team on “Southmost: Football and Life on the Boarder.”
“Mayra” uncovers a table of interconnectedness, inspiration, and the power of human connection. The film is a tribute to a remarkable woman who defied the odds but is also a testament to the enduring power of promises kept.