Third Williams County Life Lost: COVID-19 Cases Surge

By Timothy Kays

On July 19, COVID-19 claimed another life in Williams County, bringing the death total in the county to three since the onset of the pandemic. “So we got confirmation Sunday of a death, said Jim Watkins, Williams County Health Commissioner. “The individual was male, 80-plus years of age.”

Looking at the statewide COVID-19 numbers, Watkins reported, “They are showing 80,186 cases as of this afternoon, 9,968 hospitalization, 3,256 deaths, and 55,702 recovered. And then for us here in Williams County…we are sitting at 97 cases, 9 hospitalizations, 3 deaths and 70 recovered.”

These numbers reflect a strong rebound of the coronavirus throughout the state. Looking at the COVID color coded Ohio Public Health Advisory Alert System map Watkins said, “We have to say that we were really shocked today that we stayed at yellow (Level 1 Public Emergency), because we assumed we would be going to orange (Level 2 Public Emergency – High Caution) today just off of what we’re seeing. We will see. I can’t imagine we’re going to sit at yellow for very much longer as it’s all around us.”

According to Mr. Watkins, every community in Williams County has experienced the virulent pathogen. “We’ve got it in every single community,” he said. “We see it in the northeast, northwest, southeast, southwest, and central part of the county. Now Defiance went red (Level 3 Public Emergency – High Exposure / Limit Activities) today.”

“They are at the red alert level, as well as Henry County. Fulton County to our east is orange, which is the next level up from yellow. So we’re sitting here by ourselves. You have to go way down to maybe Darke County before you even get another county that’s yellow.”

As far as the rapid growth of confirmed COVID patients, Watkins said, “…the governor just spoke to that, like in the Henry County situation (Leisure Time Winery outbreak). He talked about they had an event called ‘Name That Tune.’ So they brought people from all over the region, and anytime you bring lots of people together, you run a pretty high risk.”

“And as a result of that, there were a lot of positive cases. And I think one of the things that we talked about here, what we see is people don’t know they have it. Unfortunately they go to work, they meet with families, they go to church, all of these things, feeling fine. That’s the one thing with this virus…it’s spread very easily, because the person doesn’t even know they’re spreading.”

“So I think when we talk about these things, about trying to social distance, to not give it that opportunity. You know the masks are something that a lot of people have a lot of heartache about. The reality of it is, even if you don’t believe it, could you at least try?”

“I think…we need to do everything we can so that we can be at the normalcy that we are now, even though it’s not like it used to be. It’s sure a lot better than March as far as businesses being able to open, and people go about their daily activities.”

Timothy can be reached at

1 Comment on "Third Williams County Life Lost: COVID-19 Cases Surge"

  1. How can us as the public have faith in the so called numbers when I personally know of 3 people the were scheduled to have covid test (2 here in Williams county Ohio; one in Indiana) and for whatever reason didn’t make the scheduled time but all of them received letters in the mail stating the tested positive for covid but in reality were never tested at all!! Makes me think the health care community has something up their sleeve making it real hard to believe anything our leaders have to say. How do you intend to find out the REAL TRUTH if you have false information? How can someone who dies in a car accident have the cause of death as covid knowing these facts about the system??

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