Reading about my children’s great uncle Vern Wilber Meakins who died shortly after army discharge from WW I of influenza in 1919. Vern’s mother, Cora Jane Meakins, sued the government for a term life insurance settlement, and won when the case was heard by an appellate court.
I don’t have any legal training, but lots of details emerged from the hearing.
— Vern W. was born in 1890, died in 1919, age 29.
— He worked as a teamster and farm hand.
— Drafted into the army in March 1918, discharged in February 1919.
— Married with three children.
— Even in 1919 doctors knew that influenza was primarily a respiratory illness caused by a virus. At that time influenza cost many lives. No vaccine was available then.
— The virus caused an encephalitis that killed Vern W.
— The transcript of the appeal is on line if one googles “Cora Jane Meakins vs United States of America.”