As students left for the scheduled spring break festivities, the COVID-19 was spreading quickly across the nation.
Many parents and students dismissed the power of COVID-19, but it wasn’t long before even Norman was affected by the deadly virus. For Lori McClure, a teacher, the virus is taking both a mental and physical toll on the community.
“It’s terrifying how quickly COVID-19 has affected our nation, much less our community,” Lori said. “I feel like I can’t even step in my backyard without making myself susceptible to the virus.”
Grocery stores like Walmart and Target have remained open for residents to obtain food, but even a simple run for milk at the local grocery store has become an endeavor.
“I have to schedule pick-ups at Walmart two days in advance,” Lori said. “Even with the Walmart app, I can’t get everything I need for the house. They didn’t have any Honey Nut Cheerios, and eggs were in low supply. Even Emergen-C wasn’t at Walmart for a few days.”
Sam McClure, , chimes in on the harrowing effects of the pandemic and how it affects the working class.
“Most people are working from home now, and even all the gyms are closed,” Sam said. “Orange Theory is closed. I’ve had to use Orange Theory on demand. When I take our dogs on a walk, the neighborhood has this eerie feeling to it. Everyone’s keeping at least six feet away from each other, and it’s strange, like we’re in some apocalyptic dystopia.”
As of March 26, 164 Oklahomans suffer from COVID-19, with 5 of those cases already resulting in deaths, Cleveland county has reported 27of those cases. Recently, the Norman mayor declared a ‘stay-at-home’ order in order to “flatten the curve” and reduce overall cases of COVID-19.
Meredith Rasnic, a senior at the University of Oklahoma, has had her senior year of college cut short. As a member of the Kappa Alpha Theta sorority and other organizations across OU, she has had to say goodbye to all of her extracurriculars and friends on short notice.
“I didn’t even realize that my lasts were happening,” Rasnic said. “It’s bittersweet to have to say goodbye to OU so quickly, even if we are getting online schooling out of it. I’m sad my senior year had to end this way, but as some of the OU population has already been infected by COVID-19, it makes sense to keep the school online for everyone’s safety. It’s hard, but it’s best for everyone.”
There’s no telling when the COVID-19 pandemic will slow down, but for now, it’s important for citizens to self-quarantine and stay indoors. When leaving the house, stay six feet away from others, and make sure to use hand sanitizer and avoid touching your face after interacting with others. It can take two weeks for symptoms to develop, in which someone can pass on the disease to numerous others, so it is vital that everyone does their part in reducing the spread of the disease.