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Ten Famous People Who
Survived the 1918 Flu

Smithsonian Magazine, by David A. Lovett

Original Article

Posted By:ketchuplover, 10/25/2017 8:14:04 PM

The Great Influenza Pandemic of 1918 reached just about every continent throughout the globe. It’s perhaps better known as the “Spanish Flu,” a moniker given to the virus in part because Spain’s press, unshackled by the wartime restrictions laid upon the news media in other countries, robustly reported on its deadly impact. In the United States, for instance, the Sedition Act of 1918, made it a crime to publish any utterance that would interfere with the war effort. As the virus spread throughout America, the press was initially non-alarmist. But the death and illness that followed were unmistakable; the pandemic

Comments:
This is one of the things I wish I would have asked my grandparents about.

      


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Reply 1 - Posted by: oldsfc, 10/25/2017 8:44:02 PM     (No. 11430175)

My Mother was 5yrs old at the time. She remembers, what she called the "death wagons" picking up flu victims. She was ill herself, and had a long recovery.

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Reply 2 - Posted by: Kitty Myers, 10/25/2017 8:54:23 PM     (No. 11430178)

Back in the late 80s I told my mother about a movie I had seen called "1918," with Matthew Broderick. It was about a small town in Texas where influenza killed many of its residents. She told me that her father, who was a doctor, was sent to D.C. to help with the Great Influenza Pandemic of 1918 while my grandmother was pregnant with my mother. She said Grandma was frantic that Grandpa would die or come home sick and infect her. However, he survived his mission and returned home in good health.

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Reply 3 - Posted by: Bpl40, 10/25/2017 9:02:03 PM     (No. 11430188)

My father and my Great Grand mother were the first victims. They barely recovered and the rest of the joint family went under. I remember the stories my father told me about how grandmother and grandson hobbled around and fed the rest of the gang that was flat out. One aunt and one uncle were casualties.

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Reply 4 - Posted by: Rumblehog, 10/25/2017 9:44:39 PM     (No. 11430249)

This was the real reason for then termination of World War I. Both sides lost more soldiers to Spanish Influenza than to actual combat.


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Reply 5 - Posted by: ScarletPimpernel, 10/25/2017 9:46:39 PM     (No. 11430254)

My paternal grandmother recalled that people were "dropping like flies."

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Reply 6 - Posted by: Butch, 10/25/2017 9:54:44 PM     (No. 11430267)

The scariest aspect of that epidemic was that the flu virus killed young, strong, and healthy people more than the very young, the elderly, and the sickly. It caused the body´s immune system to overreact, and the strong immune systems of healthy people killed millions of young people in the prime of their lives.

Such an epidemic could happen again, and it could well be much worse given the growth in air travel and of all travel industries over the past two or three decades. Scary!

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Reply 7 - Posted by: Hooter, 10/25/2017 11:22:39 PM     (No. 11430318)

It´s a shame Woodrow Wilson survived.

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Reply 8 - Posted by: earlybird, 10/25/2017 11:28:56 PM     (No. 11430320)

One of my uncles died of Spanish flu on a one of the last troop ships headed for France. One of the last. I found out not long ago that those did not have to go. The war was effectively over.

My Dad contracted it in South Carolina. He credited a nurse with saving his life. She moved his bed outdoors. Those crowded inside didn’t have as good a chance, she deduced. He agreed. They were right. He lived to be a still-bright 88.

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Reply 9 - Posted by: PAdiva, 10/25/2017 11:57:45 PM     (No. 11430345)

My grandmother almost died. Her newborn child did not survive.

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Reply 10 - Posted by: anonymous, 10/26/2017 12:44:28 AM     (No. 11430361)

We forget how powerful some viruses can be. The Spanish flu virus was propagated by the extraordinary circumstances of World War 1. In those days, there was very little they could do about secondary infections.

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Reply 11 - Posted by: Nodak, 10/26/2017 1:02:27 AM     (No. 11430368)

My grandmother died of it, as did the husband of a neighbor couple who were friends of my grandparents. My grandfather married the widow 5 months later and they had five more children.

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Reply 12 - Posted by: suejeanne, 10/26/2017 1:10:52 AM     (No. 11430370)

OP, I happened to ask my Grandmother (mother´s mother) about it - she was born in 1903 (lived to be three weeks away from 100) -

they were having a bad time of it in Lincoln -Great-Grandmother (1865-1959), went door to door with a doctor and a priest, the doctor and priest did their parts and Great-Grandmother made Hot Toddies for each person at each house and kept tabs on people -

somehow she did not get it nor anyone in her household - but the fiancée of one of her sons was taken by it and it was a heartbreak forever for him (received a telegram).



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Reply 13 - Posted by: Smart11344, 10/26/2017 11:52:55 AM     (No. 11431032)

Don´t you wish Hillary, Obama, Pelosi and Shumer, et al were born in 1918?

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