Crushed in TogetherPosted on: May 25, 2020
Just a couple of years ago, before any of us had really thought about the meaning of coronavirus, Catharine Arnold published a collection of primary source materials, accounting for various experiences during the so-named Spanish Influenza of 1918, the virus that spread most rapidly among soldiers engaged in or preparing for World War I. Wrote Arnold…
Outbreaks of contagious disease were common in barracks, where so many men were crushed in together, in cramped conditions… Many of the troops came from farms where they had never come in contact with contagious diseases… But [now] some patients were too weak to stand, and their symptoms included violent coughing, projectile nosebleeds, and air-hunger, some choking to death.
As we take time today to honor the fallen men and women of our armed forces, we must also, under the circumstances, give attention and honor to those who committed themselves to that service only to face death in some other form beyond that of their American duty, those who fell ill and died while entrusted with guarding our nation from enemies without.