Interview with Sun City Residents


Dr. O. Jennifer Dixon-McKnight



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The interview was conducted by Dr. O. Jennifer Dixon-McKnight and Michaela Bessinger with eight women from Sun City Carolina Lakes in Indian Land, SC as part of Project 2020: A Collaborative Oral History. The group provides critical insight into the COVID-19 pandemic and the 2020 experience. Topics of conversation include the COVID-19 pandemic, vaccination, social isolation, social justice, and political polarization, especially in regards to the 2020 U.S. Election and the Black Lives Matter movement. Other notable topics include the January 6th Attack on the Capitol (2021) and even travel experiences right before and during the pandemic. This all-female, retired group living in a 55-plus community provides a unique lens to examining the critical year 2020.

The interviewees include Wendy Anderson, Susan F. Bradley, Patricia Karlsson, Linda G. Neu, Barbara Riegel, Lorraine M. Russell, Paula Schmelzer, and Penelope A. Wilkinson. Most of the interviewees are natives of the Midwest and Northeast United States who ultimately retired in the Sun City Carolina Lakes Community of Indian Land, SC. Several have in fact served in the U.S. Foreign Service or worked in other capacities in the U.S. Intelligence Community.

Spearheaded by Dr. Dixon-McKnight, an Assistant Professor of History and African American Studies at Winthrop University, Project 2020 is best summarized in her words: “The goal was to conduct interviews that explored the various ways in which Americans were experiencing and being impacted by the various watershed moments that emerged during 2020 (the global pandemic, social unrest, financial challenges, issues with healthcare, etc.)."

Publication Date


Unique Identifier

OH 726






This interview is open for use.


COVID-19 Pandemic, 2020, Social Isolation, Vaccination, Social Unrest, 2020 U.S. Election, January 6th, Sun City Carolina Lakes

Interview with Sun City Residents