Utah’s deaf community says best picture ‘CODA’ is a glimpse into their lives

Mar 28, 2022, 6:34 PM | Updated: Jun 18, 2022, 8:43 pm

OGDEN, Utah — The film “CODA” won the Oscar for best picture at Sunday’s award show. Now, it’s shedding light on the deaf in Utah and the family members who support them.

Educators at the Utah Schools for the Deaf and Blind in Ogden said the film is giving people a window into the lives that they live every day.

It especially shines the light on children of deaf adults who deal with some unique challenges.

It’s the type of attention that only Hollywood can give to help a community be seen and heard in a way Andrea Rathbun has never experienced before.

“I have not cried in a movie as much as I cried in CODA,” Rathbun said. “You know, it was happy tears, and it was sad tears. And then, it was tears of anger and, you know, tears of joy.”

Rathbun is a CODA. In addition to her parents, she has two deaf siblings and two hearing siblings.

Andrea Rathbun's parents and two of her siblings are deaf. (KSL TV) A classroom inside the Utah Schools for the Deaf and Blind. (KSL TV) Martin Price is an educator at at the Utah Schools for the Deaf and Blind. (KSL TV)

“Now they can actually see what I’m still going through. I’m a grown adult, but I still go and support my parents. I still go and do all the things I used to do when I was growing up,” she said.

Rathbun helps the Utah School for the Deaf as an interpreter. She said being a child of deaf adults can seem lonely.

“Never being able to fit in with people that can hear, or into you know, the community of the deaf completely. We are our own little bunch,” she said with a laugh.

“CODAs are very special because they may be the best interpreters,” Price said.

He said he sees his own children deal with some of those same challenges that were portrayed in the film.

“You know, sometimes I forget what my children are dealing with.”

He said the film also showed something else.

“Yes, the sky is not the limit. It is open, that a child that is deaf can become whatever they want to.”

Rathbun hopes the deaf community will continue to be seen, even if this may be only a moment in Hollywood.

“I’m hoping it opens the eyes of, you know, people everywhere,” she said.

Rathbun and Price were impressed with Troy Kotsur’s performance, which won best supporting actor.

They’re hopeful the limelight will also remain for deaf talent like his.

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

Local News

Randy Martin working on a reading station in West Valley City. (KSL-TV's Mike Anderson)...
Mike Anderson

Utah air quality is continuing to get worse, says USU professor

A Utah State University professor says that Utahns are breathing some of the worst air we've seen in over a decade.
1 day ago
The area where first responders rescued the two people (Weber Fire District)...
Michael Houck

Two rescued from Pineview Reservoir after falling through ice

Officials are warning residents of thin ice after two people needed rescuing from the Pineview Reservoir Saturday morning. 
1 day ago
(KSL TV)...
Michael Houck

Police: Man threatening neighbors with knife, leads officers in multi-agency chase

A man is in police custody after "waving" a knife around bystanders and fleeing from police Friday evening.
1 day ago
Presenters at the Health Relationship Youth Summit asking for final questions. (KSL-TV's Mark Less)...
Alex Cabrero

Utah teens learn more about healthy relationships at youth summit

Teenagers gathered at a Healthy Relationship Youth Summit to learn more about the signs of unhealthy relationships and be able to identify them.
1 day ago
snow covered bowl in Utah mountains...
Michael Houck

Woman hit by snowmobile while tubing near Peter Sinks, flown to U of U hospital

First responders treated a woman hit by a snowmobile while tubing near the Peter Sinks area Saturday afternoon.
1 day ago
For 29 years, Mike Skogerboe has been to nearly every girls and boys basketball game, and nearly ev...
Mike Anderson

Fremont High School helps support their superfan

Students and teachers at Fremont High School teamed up to help out their superfan who rarely misses a game.
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

vintage photo of lighting showroom featuring chandeliers, lamps, wall lights and mirrors...
Lighting Design

History of Lighting Design | Over 25 Years of Providing Utah With the Latest Trends and Styles

Read about the history of Lighting Design, a family-owned and operated business that paved the way for the lighting industry in Utah.
Fiber Optical cables connected to an optic ports and Network cables connected to ethernet ports...
Brian Huston, CE and Anthony Perkins, BICSI

Why Every Business Needs a Structured Cabling System

A structured cabling system benefits businesses by giving you faster processing speeds and making your network more efficient and reliable.
notebook with password notes highlighted...
PC Laptops

How to Create Strong Passwords You Can Actually Remember

Learn how you can create strong passwords that are actually easy to remember! In a short time you can create new ones in seconds.
house with for rent sign posted...
Chase Harrington, president and COO of Entrata

Top 5 Reasons You May Want to Consider Apartment Life Over Owning a Home

There are many benefits of renting that can be overshadowed by the allure of buying a home. Here are five reasons why renting might be right for you.
Festive kitchen in Christmas decorations. Christmas dining room....
Lighting Design

6 Holiday Decor Trends to Try in 2022

We've rounded out the top 6 holiday decor trends for 2022 so you can be ahead of the game before you start shopping. 
Happy diverse college or university students are having fun on their graduation day...
BYU MBA at the Marriott School of Business

How to Choose What MBA Program is Right for You: Take this Quiz Before You Apply!

Wondering what MBA program is right for you? Take this quiz before you apply to see if it will help you meet your goals.
Utah’s deaf community says best picture ‘CODA’ is a glimpse into their lives