#60 Frank Blaha-Professional Engineer, Water Research Foundation

Topic: The Great Influenza Pandemic of 1918

November 2018 is the anniversary of the end of World War I, and it is also the anniversary of the Great Influenza Pandemic, often called the Spanish Flu. While the end of World War I is considered an historic event in our history, the 1918 Influenza Pandemic is practically forgotten.

Numbers alone tell a compelling story for the flu being a critical event for humanity. The typical estimates are that approximately 20 million people were killed by World War I over a four-year period, while 50 to 100 million people were killed by the flu–with most of those deaths occurring over a four-month period.

This presentation will shine briefly on the Great Influenza, the important intertwining of the flu with World War I, freedom of speech, and local impacts of and responses to the flu. The flu should be much better remembered, given its impact on humanity.