Deborah Hoile Oral History, 2020/07/25


Title (Dublin Core)

Deborah Hoile Oral History, 2020/07/25

Description (Dublin Core)

This is an interview of Deborah Hoile about her day to day life during the COVID-19 pandemic. Deborah is retired and speaks about spending time taking care of her granddaughter. She offers her thoughts on the effects of the pandemic upon her community of Blanchard and ways that it has responded to COVID-19. Deborah also talks about the ways COVID-19 has affected seeing some of her children and grandchildren, as well as her thoughts about how the community of Blanchard could benefit from its current desire to watch over its more vulnerable population.

Recording Date (Dublin Core)

July 25, 2020

Creator (Dublin Core)

Clinton P. Roberts
Deborah Hoile

Event Identifier (Dublin Core)


Partner (Dublin Core)

Arizona State University

Type (Dublin Core)

audio interview

Controlled Vocabulary (Dublin Core)

English Rural
English Emotion
English Home & Family Life
English Social Distance

Curator's Tags (Omeka Classic)

daily life

Collection (Dublin Core)

Over 60
Rural Voices

Linked Data (Dublin Core)

Curatorial Notes (Dublin Core)

Kylee Mamon
Edited transcript; uploaded .docx and .pdf copies of edited transcript; made previous .docx transcript private due to missing timestamps that were added. KM 09/28/2022

Date Submitted (Dublin Core)


Date Modified (Dublin Core)


Interviewer (Bibliographic Ontology)

Clinton P. Roberts

Interviewee (Bibliographic Ontology)

Deborah Hoile

Location (Omeka Classic)

United States of America

Format (Dublin Core)

mp3 audio

Language (Dublin Core)


Duration (Omeka Classic)


abstract (Bibliographic Ontology)

This is an interview of Deborah Hoile about her day to day life during the COVID-19 pandemic. Deborah is retired and speaks about spending time taking care of her granddaughter. She offers her thoughts on the effects of the pandemic upon her community of Blanchard and ways that it has responded to COVID-19. Deborah also talks about the ways COVID-19 has affected seeing some of her children and grandchildren, as well as her thoughts about how the community of Blanchard could benefit from its current desire to watch over its more vulnerable population.

Transcription (Omeka Classic)

Clinton Roberts 0:01
This is Clinton Roberts of Arizona State University HST580 for the Journal of the Plague Year archive. Today is July 25 2020. And I'm conducting an interview with Deborah Hoile. Deborah will be talking about how the COVID-19 pandemic has changed her day to day activities. What is your name?

Deborah Hoile 0:19
Deborah Hoile.

Clinton Roberts 0:20
What do you do for a living Deborah?

Deborah Hoile 0:22
I'm retired now.

Clinton Roberts 0:25
Where do you live?

Deborah Hoile 0:27
I live in Blanchard, Oklahoma.

Clinton Roberts 0:29
What's it like living in Blanchard, Oklahoma?

Deborah Hoile 0:33
It's a small town. It's much nicer, much, I don't know, more peaceful, friendlier, here than living in a larger suburb, which is where we came from.

Clinton Roberts 0:45
When did you first hear about COVID-19? And what were your thoughts about it, when you first heard about it?

Deborah Hoile 0:53
Um, gosh, thinking back, I guess it was maybe March when I first heard about it. It was, it was a little scary sounding. And even now I go back and forth. Is it worse than the flu? Is it just a flu? What are all these precautions? Because the precautions, themselves, were very scary. And then the thoughts that they started closing things down, you couldn't go do things. In fact, you couldn't even open certain types of businesses. It was, it was scary. It was a lot to take in.

Clinton Roberts 1:31
Since first hearing about COVID-19, have your thoughts changed across that time?

Deborah Hoile 1:38
I think-and I'm probably not alone in this, but I wonder, what's the truth? What are we hearing? We hear so many different things and so many conflicting bits of information. What's true? And I think that's one of the scariest things is that we don't-we as in, the little people, don't know what the truth is, if anyone does.

Clinton Roberts 2:07
How has your daily routine change since COVID-19? And in what ways?

Deborah Hoile 2:14
For the most part, I'm probably one of the luckier ones because my day to day routine hasn't changed as much. Obviously, I don't go out and do things like I used to do. But I've been fortunate in that I still take care of my granddaughter, I still see two of my four grandsons on a day to day basis. So things like that have not changed so much for me. Things that have changed as I, for a long time, didn't go to the grocery store at all. I do more online shopping now than I did in the past. And I'm much more careful when I do go out.

Clinton Roberts 2:58
Are your day to day activity-like what you mentioned, the online shopping things like that, has it made it more stressful than before?

Deborah Hoile 3:11
It has, because there are things when you know, you're looking in the refrigerator and you think oh man, I'm out of this, I need to run go get it, oh, well wait, no, I can't run, go get that. Or, you know, I'd like to run out and get this and oh, I can't or I'm out of disinfecting cleaners and I can't even find those anywhere at all. So.

Clinton Roberts 3:38
Has the COVID-19 outbreak affected how you interact and communicate with friends and family and in what ways?

Deborah Hoile 3:47
I, you know, I don't see my eldest daughter and her family as often and you know, that's sad. I don't see my grandson and his fiancé as often because of her issues, you know, being really frightened with getting something like COVID-19 and, and her underlying conditions. And, you know, I have a cousin that I would go shopping with or go out to lunch with and I haven't seen her, you know, since this started. So yeah, there are things like that that I that I really miss doing and seeing.

Clinton Roberts 4:26
Have you tried to adapt new ways to communicate and interact with these people?

Deborah Hoile 4:33
Not really new ways, but you know, now it's mostly Facebook and text messages. [laughs]

Clinton Roberts 4:43
How has the COVID-19 outbreak affected Blanchard, in particular? Have you noticed any changes?

Deborah Hoile 4:51
Well, not getting out of the house a lot, so I haven't really noticed. But, I mean, the shops downtown were closed for a while. And, you know, going to the grocery store, you know, they would have special hours for seniors, which I would take advantage of, you know. And they were-you could see people, you know, disinfecting shopping carts and, you know, storekeepers wearing mask and that sort of thing. So yeah, it has affected the town in ways that pretty much anybody can see.

Clinton Roberts 5:28
So do you know of other ways that maybe they've adapted to COVID-19? Or has Blanchard done anything in particular, that's different than what you've seen on the news in other places?

Deborah Hoile 5:48
Well, I mean, they're taking the they prescribed precautions. You know, maybe when you think about things like the high school graduation or the high school prom, you know, those are things that were done differently in different areas. And, you know, Blanchard had their own way of doing it.

Clinton Roberts 6:10
Do you think Blanchard people responded differently than they would have been bigger cities in particular?

Deborah Hoile 6:20
You know, people are people so I don't think so. I just think because it's a smaller town, maybe you don't have, you know, the pockets of those who are totally against it or, you know, the fanatics that's too strong a word, but. [laughs]

Clinton Roberts 6:40
Do you think the news media depicts COVID-19 the way you've experienced the pandemic in Blanchard and in what ways would you say it's lacking or accurate?

Deborah Hoile 6:52
Well, accuracy [slightly laughing] is something that I question a lot. I don't think it's what we've seen necessarily here in this small town the-mainly because it seems like all the news broadcasts I've seen are focused on the really big cities and, you know, things are much different in a big city than they are in a small town. So no, I don't think it's quite the same as here.

Clinton Roberts 7:22
How have you and your family responded to national and local request to use safety measures such as social distancing wearing masks?

Deborah Hoile 7:30
We are trying to follow that. I'm not one who thinks it's against my civil liberties, [laughs] to be asked to wear a mask. I think it's just common courtesy to-you know, if I feel like if, if doctors ask transplant patients to wear a mask, then the mask must do something. So I think it's a good idea to wear and I think it's a good idea to follow those precautions.

Clinton Roberts 8:02
Have you, or anybody you know, gotten sick during the COVID-19 outbreak? And that'd be COVID or non- COVID. And what has been your experience of responding to illnesses?

Deborah Hoile 8:14
We've been pretty fortunate. I did have a ruptured eardrum early on. So I did have to use an online doctor's visit for the first time. You know, fortunately, it wasn't anything serious. It got better on its own. But I did have two separate online visits for that and that's not something I would have really considered in the past.

Clinton Roberts 8:43
Does living in Blanchard seems safer or more dangerous during COVID-19 and how so?

Deborah Hoile 8:50
I think safer just because there aren't as many people. So even when you're going into the shops or, you know, going to pick up food at a drive thru restaurant, you know, you're not in contact with as many people. So I do think it's safer.

Clinton Roberts 9:10
How have your local and state governments responded to that break? Do you think their response was enough? Not enough too much? How so?

Deborah Hoile 9:21
I think they're having some of the same issues I am, you know. What's the truth on this? What's the best way to handle it? Because you look at the state and, you know, they decide maybe to make recommendations instead of making, I don't know, mandatory to do certain things and leaving it up to the smaller so I and you see smaller areas, doing different things. I think everybody's having the same problem. No one knows what the truth is, and what's the best way to deal with things. So everybody's kind of flying by the seat of their pants. And those who are in power are making some decisions that may [slightly laughs] or may not be the right ones. And I don't know that any of us would do any better. [slightly laughs again]

Clinton Roberts 10:12
And just speaking about the future, do you think COVID-19 will have a lasting effect in Blanchard beyond this year and why so?

Deborah Hoile 10:27
In some ways, because you hear more about people who are helping others, who are going out of their way to do things for the elderly, or the homebound, and I think some of that will stay.

Clinton Roberts 10:42
And what would you want future generations to know about what it was like to live in Blanchard during COVID-19?

Deborah Hoile 10:51
You know, because my day today didn't change as much. I don't think what I have to tell will be maybe as impactful as what some others do. Because I was, you know, I was fortunate in to not have to worry about money coming in, you know, my home, my cars are paid for, you know, we were able to get all the food and all the products really that we needed. And I was seeing a lot of the people that I interact with a lot, I was still seeing them on a pretty regular basis. So I don't think my life was impacted nearly as much as others have been.

Clinton Roberts 11:35
Well, thank you so much for your time, Deborah. And that's conducts the end of the interview. Thank you.

Transcribed by, 2nd pass by Clinton Roberts

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