Part 1 - Trivia Question
Which famous star received a Salk polio vaccine shot before he appeared on the “Ed Sullivan Show”?
Johnny Cash Ricky Nelson Mickey Mantle Elvis Presley
And the answer is . . .
Here’s the story about Elvis and the polio vaccine . . .
Elvis was scheduled to appear on the Ed Sullivan Show in 1956. He was a new star back then. His most famous song – Heartbreak Hotel.
Elvis was given a challenge – to take the polio vaccine in front of the press before his appearance. He did!
The photos appeared in newspapers across the country. It was a stunt to promote the struggling polio vaccination campaign. Stephen Mawdsley reported that teens were at risk for polio, and they were refusing to get the shot.
Public health officials talked to the teen heart throb, and he agreed to get the shot, plus the photo. It was about that time that US businesses realized that teens were both consumers and influencers.
Those teens were the ‘baby boomers,’ and they were coming of age. Boomers were born between the end of World War II and the 1960’s. I’m a boomer. I was born in 1959, near the end, and I’d never heard this story till I started writing this post. Click the link below to learn more.
More Info: www.theguardian.com
My Source: Quizclub.com – Sorry I don’t have the link for the question and answer.
I wasn’t born when Elvis sang Heartbreak Hotel in 1956, but if you’d like to hear it, click on the next link. The image is of Elvis performing Jail House Rock from 1957. I found a link for it too.
Part 2 – A Table and a Few Photos
The first black peak came in 1916. There were 27,000 cases of polio. A red peak at the bottom shows 6,000 deaths.
In 1949 it spiked again, with 28,000 cases and almost 2,000 deaths. The final high point was 1952, with over 36,000 cases and 2,000 deaths.
Why the steep decline? Jonas Salk invented the polio vaccine in the early 1950’s. By February 1954 school kids across the US started getting the shot.
In 1959 there was a tiny spike with 4,000 cases. Deaths were near 0. By 1964 polio disappeared in the US thanks to vaccinations.
My Source: https://www.aier.org/article/no-lockdowns-the-terrifying-polio-pandemic-of-1949-52/
Click the link to see the exact numbers for each year.
The chart doesn’t show the worst part of Polio – it attacked children. It left some in wheelchairs, others with crutches and leg braces, and some with deformed legs. I couldn’t share that picture.
Polio struck one of our presidents – FDR – Franklin Delano Roosevelt. He got polio when he was 39, but he didn’t let the disease stop him. To learn more about FDR, click on this link: https://www.fdrlibrary.org/polio
In the 1930’s researchers invented the Iron Lung. It kept you alive and breathing if polio weakened the muscles that helped you breathe. The only place you’ll see one now is in a museum.
Photo 1 - By Hewa - Own work, CC BY 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=17839345
Photo 2 - By Photo Credit:Content Providers(s): CDC - This media comes from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Public Health Image Library (PHIL), with identification number #2624.Note: Not all PHIL images are public domain; be sure to check copyright status and credit authors and content providers.Deutsch | English | македонски | slovenščina | +/−, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=21147
Click the link below to stay current with CDC guidelines for children and adults. CDC stands for the Center for Disease Control.
When I write, I can only have one voice in my head, mine. A little noise is fine. But too much, or worse yet, WORDS, and I must change rooms or pull out headphones. Then I can write on!