xt7jh98zct60_31 https://exploreuk.uky.edu/dips/xt7jh98zct60/data/mets.xml https://exploreuk.uky.edu/dips/xt7jh98zct60/data/2015ms086.dao.xml Bevins, Martha 0.05 Cubic Feet 55 items archival material 2015ms086 English University of Kentucky The physical rights to the materials in this collection are held by the University of Kentucky Special Collections Research Center.  Contact the Special Collections Research Center for information regarding rights and use of this collection. Martha Bevins letters to Tom McCarthy Radio broadcasting. Agriculture -- Kentucky. Birds Women air pilots. 1957 October 3 text 1957 October 3 2016 https://exploreuk.uky.edu/dips/xt7jh98zct60/data/2015ms086/Box_ms_42/Folder_1/Item_31/1957_10_3_Bevins_Flu_epidemics_p1.pdf 1957 October 3 1957 1957 October 3 section false xt7jh98zct60_31 xt7jh98zct60 ' ,lhaaaaaalllll_______________________
' Morning View Kentucky
3 October 1957
Hello Mr. McCarthy,
as the Asian flu swirls from continent to continent with the ‘

speed of rumor, I am following its course with more than mild '
I think I know more about asian flu than anybody. I am firmly
convinced I have had it six or eight times -- I am not sure
exactly how many because I didn't keep count.
Back in fiecember of 1943, there was a flu epidemic at car air
bases in this country. Dome were briefly quarantined, and others,
such as my base, came Very close to it.
Everyone Was aching and coughing. Consequently, when, while weathered—

' in at another field, I encountered some newly-arrived lend—lease
Russians, * Was not surprised that they were beset by ferocious coughs.
One officer could read English and write it, and even speak a

- little, but he could not understand the spoken word. He Was curious

about our ogganiZation and I spent some time with pen and paper,
printing answers to his questions.
Upon the arrival of good weather, I finished my trip, and returned
to my base, arriving there with a wild fever, aches that made the
slightest movement misery, a strange sore throat, and a frantic
cough. ,
I reported to the overflowing base hospital where the harried medics
were battling with flu cases far too numerous for their facilities.
When I said flu to the tired officer at the desk, they took my
temperature then gave me a saliva test like a race horse. Apparently
the Medical Corps was just beginning to experiment with flu shots,
and as part of their research they were having the flu of this
epidemic tested and recorded as Type a or Type B.
They sent me to bed in my barracks, the hospital being full of those
more seriously 111 than I, told me to phone if I got worse, and to
return to the hospital on the morrow. Gave me the standard 2-4-4.
Two sulpha pills every four hours and four quarts of fruit juice a day.
The sulpha wouldn't combat the flu but it wouLd prevent compliCations.
When I returned to the hospital the next day, they all paused to
look at me with interest. a corpsman settled me in a corner and took
my temperature and blood for a blood test before I knew what Was
happening. I guessed it Was going to die or something.

 , a ._
, -2 _
Presently a doctor -— he Was an expensive nose and throat man in
civilian life —- told me I had the flu all right, but it Wasn't
- Type A and it Wasn't Type B. It was a new flu virus he had never
encountered before, and there Was none of it on record anywhere.
He was terrifically interested and would have liked to study it
more thoroughly, but the rush of regular flu cases prevented that.
We went carefully over my last trmp, and he concluded I had
undoubtedly caught it from the Russians.
The medics decided against sending a report on my flu in with the
others. They derived weary amusement from thinking of the turmoil it
would create if a strange new flu virus popped up in reports on
the routine Type A or Type B.
I thought no more of it until December of 1944, when my throat
' was suddenly sore, and within the hour I began to ache and run a
fever. It was a return of my special brand of flu. I won t write
letters when I have a cold or the flu. Consequently, my Christmas
cards Went out very late that year.
It happened again in December of 1945. That was the year, I think,
‘when I didn't get my cards mailed at all. In 1946 I cautiously
sent them about Thanksgiving time, and sure enough, December brought
the flu again.
Somewhere around 1948 the flu became erratic. Once it didn t
pounce upon me until February,and another year it skidded all the
way into May. I have not had it since 1954, so can only presume
the virus is finally gone, or I have become immune to it.
Of course, I don't know that I had the asian flu, and there is no
way to prove that I did. However, the characteristics and duration
of my flu, added to the fact that the medics were convinced that I
caught it from the coughing, inquisitive Russians, support the
possibility that it is the same. Perhaps it is not new, perhaps the
Russians have had it all along.
I am waiting with considerable interest to see whether I catch the
asian flu. Of one thing I am sure, if I do contract the asian flu,
I will most certainly be able to tell whether it is my private flu
Which I had so often, or whether it is a completely new one.
ii) Q’Y‘VWV