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In this photo taken March 20, 2020, cattle rancher Joe Whitesell rides his horse in a field near Dufur, Oregon, as he helps a friend herd cattle. Tiny towns tucked into Oregon's windswept plains and cattle ranches miles from anywhere in South Dakota might not have had a single case of the new coronavirus yet, but their residents fear the spread of the disease to areas with scarce medical resources, the social isolation that comes when the only diner in town closes its doors and the economic free fall that's already hitting them hard. (AP Photo/Gillian Flaccus)

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Rural America watches pandemic erupt in cities as fear grows
March 25, 2020 11:38 a.m.

Rural America watches pandemic erupt in cities as fear grows

DUFUR, Ore. (AP) — The social distancing rules repeated like a mantra in America's urban centers, where the coronavirus is spreading exponentially, might seem silly in wide-open places where neighbors live miles apart and “working from home” means another day spent branding calves or driving a tractor alone through a field.