Muriel Thumm was born in Manhattan in 1903 and raised by her father and grandmother in Pleasantdale, New Jersey. She was 15 when she was stricken with the flu in 1918. Her grandmother had died the year before Charles, so her father, a lawyer on Wall Street, stayed by her bedside and nursed her back to health.
Once she recovered and returned to school, she would ask for one of her classmates only to find out that the girl or boy had died. Then she would look for another one, and was met with the same response. She said she and her remaining friends soon stopped asking.
Story and photo courtesy of Muriel’s daughter, Muriel Powers