Saturday, March 10, 2018

Today, in history, the worse killing spree happened.

Poor Private Gitchell wasn't feeling good. Thinking he had a cold, he made his way to the infirmary where he was stationed awaiting deployment to Europe to fight in the War to End All Wars. Within a few hours, 107 other men were admitted with bad colds as well. By the end of two weeks, 1,127 med were sick.

This strange "cold" turned out to be influenza or the Spanish flu. Within eighteen months, over 500 million people were affected around the world. Out of that ghastly number, 100 million people died. 100 million people died! 

During WWI over two thousand soldiers died a day on the Western Front. Over 9 million lost their lives fighting there and about 21 million civilians died. But those numbers seem small in comparison due to one little germ spreading it's nasty disease. A second wave hit America at the end of war, killing more; strangley, it killed young people between the ages of 18 and 35. So if the men and women didn't die in combat, they probably died in bed with the flu.

Experts disagree on where the flue started; some say Canadian lakes, others say pigs wallowing near Fort Riley, or maybe the seaport of √Čtaples, France, while others suggest it hit Europe when the 'doughboys' arrived from America. But it didn't stop; it came in three more waves, last one being the worse. The crazy thing is, young people between 18 and 35 were affected the worse and most died.



"On September 28, 200,000 people gathered for a fourth Liberty Loan Drive. Funding the war effort and showing one’s patriotic colors took precedence over concern for public health. Just days after the parade, 635 new cases of influenza were reported. Two days later, the city was forced to admit that epidemic conditions did indeed exist. Churches, schools, and theaters were ordered closed, along with all places of “public amusement.” Members of the press condemned the closings as a violation of common sense and personal freedom. Meanwhile, the ranks of the sick and dying continued to grow. By mid-October, their numbers ran into the hundreds of thousands. Hospitals quickly reached capacity. Church parish houses and state armories doubled as shelters for the sick."




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